The Illinois Coalition on Mental Health & Aging advocates for services and policies that promote quality care and the reduction and prevention of mental illnesses affecting older adults in Illinois.
March 14, 2020
Older Americans Act Reauthorized by Congress
According to a Legislative Update published by n4a – the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 4334 on March 11, 2020 to reauthorize the Older Americans Act. The House action concurred with the Senate’s version of the bill which was passed unanimously on March 3, 2020
Key provisions H.R. 4334 – Reauthorization of the Older Americans Act of 2020:
- Reauthorizing the OAA for five years through FY 2024
- Increasing authorized funding levels: a seven percent increase is recommended for the first year, with six percent increases in each subsequent year through FY 2024, totaling a 35 percent increase over five years
- Language clarifying that AAAs can, outside of the OAA, engage in private pay, integrated care and other arrangements to expand services
- Removing the Title III E funding cap on grandfamilies and older relative caregivers
- Authorizing an HCBS grant demonstration program for Title VI Native American aging programs to enhance the capacity of Title VI programs to support wrap-around supportive services to Native American elders in tribal country. The bill also authorizes $500k in additional annual funding for Title VI programs
- Establishing a research, demonstration and evaluation center for the Aging Network to improve assessment and promote advancement of the relationship between OAA programs and services and health outcomes
- Encouraging states to work with AAAs to address potential administrative barriers to transferring funds between nutrition programs to best meet local needs
The bill now goes to the White House for approval by the President.
March 11, 2020
Advocacy Update – FY2021 Proposed State Budget
On February 19, 2020, Governor Pritzker presented his proposed budget for the State of Illinois for Fiscal Year 2021
The entire state budget is posted on the website of the Illinois Office of Management and Budget and is available at this link:
The Illinois Department on Aging posted budget summaries for IDoA and other state human service agencies on their website: https://www2.illinois.gov/aging/Pages/default.aspx
January 7, 2020
New Illinois Laws in 2020
On December 25, 2019, Sam Dunklau, reporter for Illinois Issues and NPR Illinois published a summary of new laws enacted in Illinois effective in 2020. For details go to the following link and download the text and podcast:
New Illinois Laws 2020: Health and Human Services
Review the new laws that will take effect on Jan. 1, 2020.
Published December 30, 2019
Source: Illinois State Democrats
For more information and links to specific legislation go to this link:
On The National Scene
EVENT: Update on Federal Legislation” presented by Joel Miller to the National Coalition on Mental Health and Aging
DATE: June 26, 2017
INFO: Download the Powerpoint presentation by clicking the button below.
At The State Level
On July 6, 2017, the Illinois House of Representatives overrode the Governor’s veto and passed a balanced budget.
The General Assembly enacted three budget bills:
A summary of the budget bills is attached below, courtesy of State Representative Greg Harris (D-13).
Also attached below are the House’s analyses of these bills reflecting final action by the Senate and House, provided courtesy of Terry Steczo, with Government Strategy Associates.
TIPS FOR EFFECTIVE ADVOCACY
- Tell your story – and empower consumers to tell their stories;
- Be factual – always tell the truth, be a reliable information source;
- Be authentic – stay true to the voice of the people you represent;
- Be present – don’t underestimate the power of showing up;
- Be engaging – invite lawmakers to share their stories about your issue;
- Be strategic – know when to act and send your message;
- Be persistent – ask lawmakers to commit to supporting your position;
- Be a good team player – coalesce with other advocates, report back; and
- Be thankful – recognize and thank lawmakers for their support.