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LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
Posted on Tuesday, March 14, 2017

March 10, 2017 | Bill Tracker

Prepared by: Dodie Wellshear, Ad Astra Government Relations

 

Slower Pace After Break

The pace at the Statehouse got off to a slow start, following the legislative turnaround break. On Monday, the Senate quickly dispensed with SB175, a bill that contained the governor’s suggested revenue enhancements – including an increase on cigarettes and tobacco. On a rarely used motion to strike the enacting clause of the bill, SB175 was effectively killed in the Senate.

Senate leaders were not supportive of SB175, debating it more to send a message to the governor than anything. Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, has repeatedly called on the governor to provide the legislature with a “structurally balanced budget,” to no avail. The governor’s budget proposal, of course, relies heavily on one-time transfers, borrowing, and selling off the master tobacco settlement proceeds.

Next week, the Senate will take up the current fiscal year rescission bill, HB2052, and rumors are there may be some cuts added to that. The Senate Assessment and Taxation Committee will begin earnestly working on their own tax plan, which likely will not include retroactivity to January 1, 2017.

House Committee Advances Psychiatry KMSLP Legislation

The House Health and Human Services Committee passed SB32 out favorably on Thursday, sending it to the full House for action. The bill sets up a medical student scholarship program and a residency bridge program for psychiatry, much like the Kansas Medical Student Loan Program (KMSLP) for primary care.

As it was originally drafted, the bill would have added psychiatry into the KMSLP and created competition for those primary care slots. KAFP opposed the legislation and said opposition would be removed only if additional slots were created for psychiatry, in which case support would be given. KAFP worked with the Community Mental Health Centers and key legislators to create separate programs and new slots, to be separately funded, for psychiatry.

On Thursday, KAFP testified in support of SB32, as amended, and recommended that the committee vote it out favorably. In a rather unusual move, the committee took action on the bill the same day as they held the hearing. Passage by the House seems highly likely. From there, the legislature will need to find funding to pay for the new psychiatry scholarships.

Family Doctor of the Day

Thank you to the following for providing Family Doctor of the Day services for the Kansas Legislature this past week: Dr. R.C. Trotter, Dodge City; Dr. Jennifer Bacani-McKenney, Fredonia; Dr. Marla Ullom-Minnich, Moundridge; Dr. Danelle Perry, Overland Park; and Dr. Wendy Biggs, Kansas City.

The service you provide is appreciated, especially at a time when most legislators are away from their hometown physicians.

Committees of Interest: Week of March 13-17

Monday, March 13

9:30 am, S-Public Health and Welfare, Room 118-N

Hearings:

·         HB2045 – Period for which institutional licenses under healing arts act are valid

·         HB2027 – Healing arts concerning anatomic pathology billing

Tuesday, March 14

9:30 am, S-Public Health and Welfare, Room 118-N

Hearing: HB2121 – Reporting the administration of vaccines to the state registry

Wednesday, March 15

9:30 am, S-Public Health and Welfare, Room 118-N

Hearings on:

·        HB2030Pharmacist, pharmacy student or intern, administration of any vaccine to a person six years of age or older

·         HB2205 Vaccinations for meningitis required

1:30 pm, H-Health and Human Services, Room 546-S

Hearing on: HB2152Authorizing hemp treatments for certain medical conditions.

Thursday, March 16

9:30 am, S-Public Health and Welfare, Room 118-N

Hearings on:

·         HB2107 – Inclusion of biological products in the Kansas pharmacy act

·         HB2219 – Relating to diabetes information reporting

1:30 pm, House Health and Human Services, Room 546-S

Hearing on: HB2065 – Assessments on hospitals and health maintenance organizations

Note: Bill number links will lead to a Supplemental Note (SN) when available, as these clearly explain the bill and actions taken on the bill. In cases where no action has been taken on a bill, it will link directly to the bill.