March 23, 2022
The NYS Council usually holds a weekly Member Support and Public Policy call on Thursday mornings from 9:15 – 10:00.This week we are cancelling our weekly meeting and asking all NYS Council members to use the time you would have spent on the call to weigh in with your elected leaders re: critical state budget issues.
PLEASE SEE INSTRUCTIONS BELOW AND ATTACHED CONTACT LIST.
Summary: As the Governor and Legislature work to reach agreement on a final budget for FY 2023 by April 1, 2022, NYS Council members are urged to contact, via email and twitter, Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Speaker Heastie and their own Senator and Assemblymember and request that they make sure the final state budget agreement includes our priorities (2 bullets directly below), and the Opioid Advisory Board is convened immediately and funds are distributed at once (last bullet directly below):
- COLA: 11% COLA for all Human Service providers that includes Health Home Care Managers and OTDA NYSSHP.
- Telehealth rate parity per the Governor’s budget proposal (HMH, Part V) and in S5505 – language in the Senate one house budget bill that would codify rate parity for reimbursement of behavioral health and other telehealth services reimbursed by Medicaid managed care and private health plans.
- Immediately convene the state’s Opioid Advisory Board and move the funds recovered from lawsuits and taxes into the community where they can assist New Yorkers impacted by the Opioid Crisis.
At this point, three-way negotiations are ongoing and none of the issues listed above are off the table.
First, if your legislator is on the Mental Hygiene Budget Committee, it is especially important you make your voice heard.
The members of the Mental Health sub-committee are below:
ADDITIONAL ACTIONS NEEDED
- Please send an email to Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, and your own Senator and Assemblymember to urge them to support our priorities.
- Tweet the following messages and tag Senate Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins (@AndreaSCousins), Assembly Speaker Heastie (@CarlHeastie), and YOUR Senator and Assemblymember:
Twitter: Community behavioral health investments should be top of the list. Correct past injustices & enact 11% COLA for our sector today!
Twitter: Ongoing Opioid Pandemic is completely preventable. Move the Opioid funds into the Community! #TreatmentNotTragedy
Twitter: Telehealth is a game changer for underserved NYers. Rate parity ensures qualified providers deliver the care. Enact executive budget Part V & S5505. Twitter: NYS Medicaid managed care is a $60B/year initiative.
- Enact HMH Part P & bring MOC accountability to the Program!
THANK YOU FOR TAKING THE TIME TO WEIGH IN WITH YOUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES!
*In addition, if you are in a district represented by either Assemblyman Gottfried or Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, please call their offices and weigh in on the need for a Telehealth rate parity deal that includes both Medicaid and private health plan reimbursement.