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AB-1643 Developmental services: fair hearings.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 06/20/2019 09:00 PM
AB1643:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  June 20, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 28, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1643


Introduced by Assembly Member Eduardo Garcia

February 22, 2019


An act to amend Sections 4434 and 4629.5 Section 4710 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to developmental services.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1643, as amended, Eduardo Garcia. Developmental services. services: fair hearings.
The Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act requires the State Department of Developmental Services to contract with regional centers to provide services and supports to individuals with developmental disabilities. Under existing law, the regional centers purchase needed services for individuals with developmental disabilities through approved service providers or arrange for those services through other publicly funded agencies. Existing law requires each regional center to post specified information on its internet website, including purchase of service policies. Existing law requires a service agency, defined, in part, as a developmental center or regional center, to have a fair hearing procedure that meets prescribed requirements, including adequate notice standards, to resolve conflicts between the service provider and recipients of, or applicants for, service. Existing law provides that adequate notice be sent to the applicant or recipient and the authorized representative in specified circumstances, including if the service agency makes certain decisions, such as to reduce, to terminate, or to change services described in an individual program plan, without the mutual consent of the service recipient or authorized representative.
This bill would instead require the service agency to provide adequate notice to the above-specified individuals if the service agency makes specified decisions relating to services, irrespective of whether the service agency makes this decision without mutual consent of the service recipient or authorized representative. The bill would make technical, conforming changes and other nonsubstantive changes.

This bill would additionally require each regional center to post on its internet website any other policies, guidelines, or assessment tools used to determine the service needs of a consumer, and would require the department to ensure that the purchase of service policies and other policies, guidelines, or assessment tools are available to the public on the regional center’s internet website.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 4710 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

4710.
 (a) Adequate notice shall be sent The service agency shall provide adequate notice, as described in Section 4701, to the applicant or recipient and the authorized representative, if any, by certified mail at least 30 days prior to any of the following actions:
(1) The service agency makes a decision without the mutual consent of the service recipient or authorized representative to reduce, terminate, or change services set forth in an individual program plan.
(2) A recipient is determined to be The service agency determines that the recipient is no longer eligible for agency the service agency’s services.
(b) Adequate notice shall be sent to the recipient and the authorized representative, if any, by certified mail no more than five working days after the service agency makes a decision without the mutual consent of the recipient or authorized representative, if any, to deny the initiation of a service or support requested for inclusion in the individual program plan.
(c) If the reason for denial of services or modification of services in a recipient’s individual program plan is a lack of funds in the regional center budget, the regional center shall be the service agency responsible for giving adequate notice and participating in the fair hearing procedure under this chapter.
(d) (1) The regional center shall, shall notify, within 30 days after written notice is mailed to the applicant or client, notify client, the department in writing of the denial if a lack of funds in the regional center budget is the reason for one of the following:

(1)

(A) The denial of services to an applicant.

(2)

(B) The denial of services to a current regional center client requesting services not included in the client’s individual program plan but determined to be necessary by the interdisciplinary team.

(3)

(C) Denial, cutback, or termination of current services to a recipient set forth in the individual program plan.

The

(2) The notification to the department shall include the nature of the service requested, a request that the department allocate sufficient funds to the regional center within 30 days to provide the service, the projected cost for the service for the balance of the fiscal year, and information substantiating the reason for the lack of funds to purchase the service.
(e) If a person requests regional center services and is found to be ineligible for these services, the regional center shall give adequate notice to the applicant or recipient and the authorized representative, if any, pursuant to Section 4701. Notice shall be sent within five working days of the time limits set forth in Sections 4642 and 4643.
(f) The advance notice specified in subdivision (a) shall not be required when if a reduction, termination, or change in services is determined to be necessary for the health and safety of the recipient. However, adequate notice shall be given within 10 days after the service agency action.

SECTION 1.Section 4434 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:
4434.

(a)Notwithstanding preexisting rights to enforce the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act (Division 4.5 (commencing with Section 4500)), it is the intent of the Legislature that the department ensure that the regional centers operate in compliance with federal and state law and regulation and provide services and supports to consumers in compliance with the principles and specifics of this division.

(b)The department shall take all necessary actions to support regional centers to successfully achieve compliance with this section and provide high quality services and supports to consumers and their families.

(c)The contract between the department and individual regional centers required by Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 4620) of Division 4.5 shall include a provision requiring each regional center to render services in accordance with applicable provisions of state laws and regulations. In the event that the department finds a regional center has violated this requirement, or whenever it appears that any regional center has engaged in or is about to engage in any act or practice constituting a violation of any provision of Division 4.5 (commencing with Section 4500) or any regulation adopted thereunder, the department shall promptly take the appropriate steps necessary to ensure compliance with the law, including actions authorized under Section 4632 or 4635. The department, as the director deems appropriate, may pursue other legal or equitable remedies for enforcement of the obligations of regional centers including, but not limited to, seeking specific performance of the contract between the department and the regional center or otherwise act to enforce compliance with Division 4.5 (commencing with Section 4500) or any regulation adopted thereunder.

(d)As part of its responsibility to monitor regional centers, the department shall collect and review printed materials issued by the regional centers, including, but not limited to, purchase of service policies and other policies, guidelines, or assessment tools utilized by regional centers when determining the services needs of a consumer, instructions and training materials for regional center staff, board meeting agendas and minutes, and general policy and notifications provided to all providers and consumers and families. Within a reasonable period of time, the department shall review new or amended purchase-of-service policies prior to implementation by the regional center to ensure compliance with statute and regulation. The department shall take appropriate and necessary steps to prevent regional centers from utilizing a policy or guideline that violates any provision of Division 4.5 (commencing with Section 4500) or any regulation adopted thereunder. The department shall ensure that purchase of service policies and other policies, guidelines, or assessment tools utilized by regional centers when determining the service needs of a consumer are available to the public as required by paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 4629.5.

SEC. 2.Section 4629.5 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:
4629.5.

(a)In addition to the requirements set forth in Section 4629, the department’s contract with a regional center shall require the regional center to adopt, maintain, and post on its internet website a board-approved policy regarding transparency and access to public information. The transparency and public information policy shall provide for timely public access to information, including, but not limited to, information regarding requests for proposals and contract awards, service provider rates, documentation related to establishment of negotiated rates, audits, and IRS Form 990. The transparency and public information policy shall be in compliance with applicable law relating to the confidentiality of consumer service information and records, including, but not limited to, Section 4514.

(b)To promote transparency, each regional center shall include on its internet website, as expeditiously as possible, at least all of the following:

(1)Regional center annual independent audits.

(2)Biannual fiscal audits conducted by the department.

(3)Regional center annual reports pursuant to Section 4639.5.

(4)Contract awards, including the organization or entity awarded the contract, and the amount and purpose of the award.

(5)Purchase of service policies and any other policies, guidelines, or assessment tools used to determine the service needs of a consumer.

(6)The names, types of service, and contact information of all vendors, except consumers or family members of consumers.

(7)Board meeting agendas and approved minutes of open meetings of the board and all committees of the board.

(8)Bylaws of the regional center governing board.

(9)The annual performance contract and yearend performance contract entered into with the department pursuant to this division.

(10)The biannual Home and Community-based Services Waiver program review conducted by the department and the State Department of Health Care Services.

(11)The board-approved transparency and public information policy.

(12)The board-approved conflict-of-interest policy.

(13)Reports required pursuant to Section 4639.5.

(14)A link to the page on the department’s internet website specified in subdivision (d).

(15)The salaries, wages, and employee benefits for all managerial positions for which the primary purpose is the administrative management of the regional center, including, but not limited to, directors and chief executive officers.

(c)The department shall establish and maintain a transparency portal on its internet website that allows consumers, families, advocates, and others to access provider and regional center information. Posted information on the department’s internet website transparency portal shall include, but need not be limited to, all of the following:

(1)A link to each regional center’s internet website information referenced in subdivision (b).

(2)Biannual fiscal audits conducted by the department.

(3)Vendor audits.

(4)Biannual Home and Community-based Services Waiver program reviews conducted by the department and the State Department of Health Care Services.

(5)Biannual targeted case management program and federal nursing home reform program reviews conducted by the department.

(6)Early Start Program reviews conducted by the department.

(7)Annual performance contract and year-end performance contract reports.

(d)The department shall establish and maintain a page on its internet website that includes both a list of services purchased by regional centers or provided directly to consumers by regional centers and a brief description of those services.