Lawmakers build a health-related Christmas tree to save bills in waning hours of Day 28
03/12/2013 06:53 PM
Lawmakers shifted into full horse trading mode Tuesday night as they attached seven health care-related bills to House Bill 366 aimed at identifying congenital heart disease in newborns.
The omnibus health bill at one point had 10 additional measures hung on it like a Christmas tree before the free conference committee of House and Senate members Tuesday night.
“You have to know what you can pass and what you can’t,” said Rep. Jimmie Lee, D-Elizabethtown.
After a meeting shortly before 8 p.m., the conference committee created the “healthy Christmas tree” starting with House Bill 123, which would create a program within the Commission of Women to keep confidential the addresses of women who are crime victims.
“If I don’t get 123, it’s going to hang on that board until hell freezes over,” said Burch, who chairs the House Health and Welfare Committee. “I’ve worked on (HB123) for almost a year.”
His counterpart in the Senate, Sen. Julie Denton, R-Louisville, said that bill was the only one she had “heard push-back about” in the Senate mostly because it got stuck in the Senate Judiciary Committee and hadn’t had a hearing.
“If that’s the will of the chairman, I’m going to go back and fight for that,” Denton said in a moment of goodwill between two committee chairs who had a rocky relationship at certain points earlier in the session.
The group then pared back the list of bills. Still included on the “healthy Christmas tree” bill were:
- House Bill 187, which Lee said would save millions of dollars in the free prescription drug program for underinsured Kentuckians.
- House Bill 79, which would exempt licensed health care providers from being disciplined for prescribing naloxone for an opioid overdose.
- House Bill 387, which would provide nutritional supplements for low birth weight newborns.
- Senate Bill 201 regarding licensed diabetes educators.
- Senate Bill 38 that requires Medicaid to accept provider credentialing by a Medicaid managed care organization.
- Senate Bill 108 that would require the state Medicaid Department or a managed care company it hired to contract directly with the IMPACT Plus program, a behavioral health program for children.
The committee planned to take up the final version of the agreed-upon bill again at 9:15 p.m.
Below the Fold
Leading lobbyist Bob Babbage says that Democrats have work cut out in trying to recapture governor's office in 2019
Stivers says bill concerning board of trustees of all state universities could see action when session resumes in February
Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.