Below is our initial analysis of the proposed 2024-25 Executive Budget. We will continue reviewing the budget and analyzing the impact of these proposals.
Initial Budget Analysis
Independent Living Funding
Once again Independent Living is level funded at $16 million in this year’s Executive Budget. As in past years we are asking for $18 million as a stepping stone for addressing the systemic underfunding of our network. There is a proposed 1.5% Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for human service agencies (Health/Part FF). ILCs are not included because of our placement in the State Education Budget. We know you as a members work just as hard as everyone else in the Human Services field. Let’s join forces so you get the long overdue COLA you deserve!
Access to Home
The Executive budget funds the program at only $1 million, reverting last year’s funding increase of $2 million. We will need to get the legislature to restore the $2 million increase included in last year’s budget and add additional funding to this severely under-funded, yet critical program. The cut undermines housing accessibility which should be part of the Master Plan on Aging and Disability. We continue to advocate for a statewide program available to all residents in the state that is funded at $10 million.
Health / Medicaid
Fair Pay for Home Care not included in the budget
We continue to work on funding and getting the Fair Pay bill passed to address all of the related concerns, including ensuring the pass through of funds from plans to providers.
Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program Wage Parity Elimination
New York City, Long Island, and Westchester would lose wages and benefits of $200 million for CDPA workers, known as wage parity. The benefit would stay in place for agency-based personal care and other home care. This proposal was included in last year’s Executive Budget and defeated by the legislature thanks to strong advocacy.
Medicaid Global Spending Cap
The FY 2025 Executive Budget proposes renewing the cap for another two years. The Global Cap spending limit is set by the five-year rolling average of Medicaid spending projections within the National Health Expenditure Accounts produced by Office of the Actuary in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as set forth in the FY 2023 budget. (Health/Part A)
OPWDD - Support Access to More Independent Living Settings
Allow DSPs to perform nursing tasks in a non-facility community-based setting. (Health/Part EE)
Medical Debt Protections
The budget includes a prohibition on hospitals to commence legal action on medical debt for low-income consumers, earning less than 400% of the Federal Poverty Level. The budget also expands financial assistance programs, limits interest rates, and lowers monthly payment amounts. (Health/Part O)
Eliminate Prescriber Prevails
The budget proposes eliminating prescriber prevails, which ensures people can access medications specifically prescribed instead of alternative medications. (Health/Part I)
Office of the Chief Disability Officer
Support for the Interagency Coordinating Council for Services to Persons who are Deaf, Deafblind, or Hard of Hearing. The FY 2025 Budget provides for an additional FTE to better support the Interagency Council for the Deaf, Deafblind, or Hard of Hearing within the Office of the Chief Disability Officer (CDO) and the deafblind community. This staff member will increase outreach and advocacy for deafblind individuals.
Funding for New York’s Olmstead Plan. Under the Office of the Chief Disability Officer, the FY 2025 Executive Budget includes $250,000 for New York’s Most Integrated Setting Coordinating Council (MISCC) to issue an Olmstead Plan. This will ensure that people with disabilities receive services in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs.
Open Meetings Law
Extend Videoconference Participation in Public Meetings. This bill would extend for two years authorization for public bodies to conduct public meetings at which some members may join by videoconference from locations not accessible to the public, for example a personal residence or private office. The current bill is scheduled to sunset on July 1st 2024. We support retaining the above expansion and continue to advocate for additional permanent expansion of the existing Open Meetings Law (Memo sent December 1st 2023 with 35 other organizations in support). (TED/Part KK)
In 2015, by Executive Order, New York’s Employment First Commission released a report outlining a path for New York to be an Employment First State. Governor Hochul has made disability employment a top priority for the administration. In her Executive budget, the Governor is proposing a $6.7 million investment to support a multi-agency effort led by OPWDD to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities. The 2015 plan is available at https://nyess.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2023/07/employment_first_march2015_final.pdf .