Policy Issues

Here we have accumulated some letters that we have sent in support or opposition to policy changes that have been proposed recently in lieu of being able to attend and testify in person.

2021-22 Legislative Session

To access any of the bills, testimonies, and legislative actions, search by LD number here

LD 1196: An Act Regarding Targets for Health Plan Investments in Primary Care and Behavioral Health
We provided written testimony, oral testimony and participated in the behavioral health stakeholder group that helped develop the amended version to require annual reporting of behavioral health spending to DHHS and the legislature and to develop reasonable standards and accountability for behavioral health credentialing.

LD 1626: An Act Implementing the Recommendations of the Task Force on Changes to the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Implementing Act
Written testimony provided in support of this bill which would ensure tribal communities' right to sovereign governance is respected and ensured.

LD 1727: An Act Concerning Sexual Misconduct on Campus
Written testimony provided in support of the bill’s intent and amending to protect student confidentiality and ensure collaboration with community agencies.

LD 1785: An Act To Address Staffing Shortages in Critical Public Safety Jobs through Economic Incentives
Written and oral testimony provided in support of an amendment to this bill which would explicitly include social workers as eligiblefor targeted student loan forgiveness from the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME).

LD 1968: An Act to Expand Access to Mental Health and Crisis Care for Individuals in Jails and Individuals Experiencing Homelessness
Written testimony provided in support of this bill which would expand access to mental health services and crisis care for individuals in jails and individuals experiencing homelessness.

LD 1995: Governor Mill’s Supplemental Budget for Fiscal Year 2022-23, specifically related to Part H: Job Creation through the Educational Opportunity Program Tax Credit
Written and oral testimony provided in support of this budget with one change which would to increase the total amount of the annual and lifetime tax credits for student loans.

LD 696: An Act to Prohibit Solitary Confinement in Maine’s Corrections System
Written testimony provided in support of this bill which proposes reasonable and achievable steps to restrict the use of isolation, to help those with mental health diagnoses get the care they need, and to increase the health and safety of our communities.

LD 1920: An Act To Enact the Interstate Counseling Compact To Address Inequities in Access to Clinical Counseling Services and Increase Maine's Provider Workforce
Written testimony provided in support of this bill which will increase Mainer's access to mental and behavioral health services by:

  • increasing the number of providers licensed to provide mental and behavioral health services to Maine residents.
  • allowing college-age youth to continue care with their regular provider, while out-of-state for education.
  • easing restrictions on across-state-line Telehealth services, increasing access to mental health care for persons with depression, anxiety and agoraphobia so severe that they cannot leave their homes

2020-2021 Legislative Session

LD1: An Act To Establish the COVID-19 Patient Bill of Rights. Amendment February 12, 2021
Submitted to the Committee on Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Services on February 21, 2021, we supported this amendment which would ensure audio-only telehealth care is reimbursed at the same rate as in-person services.

LD2: An Act to Require the Inclusion of Racial Impact Statements in the Legislative Process
Submitted to the Committee on State and Local Government on February 21, 2021, we supported this bill which would require the Inclusion of Racial Impact Statements in the legislative process.

LD48: An Act To Require the Department of Health and Human Services to Request a Waiver Relating to Support Services and To Provide Funds to Prevent Homelessness
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill which would provide Medicaid-funded support services to individuals experiencing homelessness in Maine.

LD196: Resolve, To Insure Access to Community Mental Health Services
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill which would increase reimbursement rates for daily living support services and any home and community-based services provided by behavioral health professionals by 15%.

LD253: Voter ID Legislation
Submitted to the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee, we opposed this bill which would require that a voter provide proof of identity for the purpose of voting with photographic identification approved by the Secretary of State by rule.

LD 323: An Act Regarding Insurance Coverage for Telehealth Services; LD 333: An Act Regarding Telehealth; and LD 849: An Act To Make Permanent the Telehealth Reimbursement Options Passed by Emergency
Measures

Submitted to the Committee on Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Services, we supported these bills which would make the changes to telehealth reimbursement during the COVID-19 pandemic permanent. 


LD360: Resolve, To Reduce Barriers to Recovery from Addiction by Expanding Eligibility for Targeted Case Management Services

Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill which expand eligibility to receive Substance Use Treatment for those receiving targeted case management services through MaineCare.

LD415: Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services to Increase MaineCare Reimbursement Rates for Targeted Case Management Services to Reflect Inflation
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill which requires the Department of Health and Human Services to amend its rules governing MaineCare reimbursement for targeted case management services to provide an increase reflecting cost increases from 2010 to 2020.

LD428: An Act to Prevent Tax Haven Abuse
Submitted to the Committee on Taxation, we supported this bill which would address the use of tax havens by corporations.

LD489: Environmental Amendment
Submitted to the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, we supported this bill which would amend the Constitution of Maine to grant the people of the State a right to a clean and healthy environment and to the preservation of the natural, cultural, recreational, scenic and healthful qualities of the environment.

LD495: An Act To Improve Income Tax Progressivity by Establishing New Top Individual Income Tax Rates
Submitted to the Committee on Taxation, we supported this bill which increase the tax rates on those who are the highest earners in the state.

LD496: An Act To Clear Waiting Lists for and Ensure Timely Access to Mental Health Services for Maine Children
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill which would require the Maine Department of Health and Human Services to amend its policies to increase MaineCare reimbursement rates for child mental health services by July 1st of this year.

LD557: Photo ID for Voting
Submitted to the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee, we opposed this bill which would require the presentation of proof of identity in the form of a photograph identification document when voting in person. 

LD582: An Act To Support the Fidelity and Sustainability of Assertive Community Treatment
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill that would increase reimbursement rates for Assertive Community Treatment.

LD 674: An Act To Support Early Intervention and Treatment of Psychotic Disorders
Submitted to the Health and Human Services Committee, we supported this bill that would ensure bundled care reimbursement of this evidenced-based approach to Early Intervention and Treatment of Psychotic Disorders.

LD848: An Act To Increase High-speed Internet In Rural Maine
Submitted to the Committee on Energy, Utilities, and Technology, we supported this bill that would increase access to high-speed internet for residents in Rural Maine.

LD 996: An Act To Improve Dental Health Access for Maine Children and Adults with Low Incomes
Submitted to the State Government Committee, we supported this bill expand dental care options for those on Medicaid to include non-emergency services.

LD 1045 An Act to Support Universal Health Care
Submitted to the Committee on Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Services, we supported this bill that expands access to health care for low-income individuals and families.

LD 1135: An Act Regarding Substance Use Disorder Treatment Services and Increasing Reimbursement Rates for Those Services
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill that would increase reimbursement rates for Substance Use Treatment

LD 1136, An Act to Promote Fairness in Income Tax Rates by Making Them More Progressive, LD 1443,  An Act Regarding Higher Income Tax Levels, and LD 1500, An Act to Bring Equity to Maine’s Tax Laws by Adjusting Certain Individual Income Tax Rates.
Submitted to the Committee on Taxation, we supported these bills that would address income inequality and create opportunity to long-term financial investments.

LD 1148: Resolve, To Increase Broadband Access in Private Nonmedical Institutions
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill that would require DHHS to collaborate with nonmedical institutions to strategize and develop a plan to meet these needs.

LD 1196: An Act Regarding Targets for Health Plan Investments in Primary Care and Behavioral Health
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill that would set expectations and provide incentives for insurers to strengthen our primary care and behavioral health systems.

LD 1262: Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Develop a Comprehensive Statewide Strategic Plan To Serve Maine People with Behavioral Health Needs throughout Their Lifespans
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we supported this bill that develops a comprehensive plan to serve people with Behavioral Health concerns over the course of their lives. 

LD 1463 An Act to Make HealthCare Coverage More Affordable for Working Families and Small Businesses
Submitted to the Committee on Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Services, we supported this bill that proposes a realistic, fundable method to address lack of healthcare coverage for working class families.

LD 1559: Resolve, To Create the Commission To Develop a Paid Family and Medical Leave Benefits Program
Submitted to the Committee on Labor and Housing, we supported this bill that would create a state supported Paid Family and Medical Leave program to address many forms of income disparity.

LD 1677, An Act to Support Frontline Workers by Adding a Temporary Tax Bracket Affecting High Earners,
Submitted to the Taxation Committee, we supported this bill that would create a temporary tax bracket for those with the highest incomes in order to improve fairness and allow for investment in Maine's future.

MaineCare Reimbursement Rate Feedback
Submitted to the Committee on Health and Human Services, we encouraged the committee to evaluate the rate of reimbursement for Behavioral Health and Substance Use Treatment.