Dear Interested Stakeholder,
On December 18, Governor Inslee released his proposed 2020 supplemental budget. We were pleased to see a budget that prioritizes services for the clients we serve. The budget included SOLA (State Operated Living Alternative) homes for adults and children, Family Mentorship, administrative support for Individual Providers who provide personal care services in the form of the new Consumer Directed Employer program, the continued progress made in the cooperative venture of the Ruckelshaus workgroup with the Governor’s office, legislators and stakeholders, and investments required by new or revised federal regulations.
Below are some of the significant budget items that are included in the Governor’s budget:
Best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season.
- Expanded SOLA Options: Three more SOLA homes, serving nine clients, phased in by June 30, 2021 in order to reduce reliance on Residential Habilitation Centers as recommended by the “Ruckelshaus workgroup” comprised of representatives from the Governor’s office, legislators, community stakeholders, and DDA. ($1.7M GF-S; $3.4M Total Funds; 16.2 FTE)
- Family Mentorship Program: This is a 50 percent increase to the Family Mentor Project, which helps connect families with loved ones in institutional settings with families who have successfully transitioned into a community setting. It was also recommended by the “Ruckelshaus workgroup.” ($225,000 GF-S)
- Cross Agency Complex Youth: Two new Children’s SOLA homes in Western Washington for children and youth age 20 and younger. These individuals are not eligible for Residential Habilitation Center admission and are not able to successfully transition to out-of-home residential placements because suitable community options do not exist. ($1.9M GF-S; $3.5M Total Funds; 14.6 FTE)
- Fircrest Nursing Facility Replacement: Pre-design work has been completed on replacing the “Y-buildings” on the Fircrest campus with a modern nursing facility. The next stage is design work; funded in the capital budget. ($6.7M GF-S)
- Dan Thompson Community Investments: Funds family support and/or employment/day services for eligible persons with developmental disabilities who can be served by community-based developmental disability services. ($1.0M DD Community Trust Account)
- DD Continuum of Care Workgroup: Funding is provided solely for the department to advance the recommendations of the "Rethinking Intellectual Disability Policy to Empower Clients, Develop Providers and Improve Services" Ruckelshaus report. The purpose of this work is to design and implement a modern, community-focused, person-centered and individualized service delivery system for individuals who currently reside in Residential Habilitation Centers. ($180,000 GF-S; $300,000 Total Funds; 1.6 FTE)
- Consumer Directed Employer (CDE): DSHS continues to implement ESSB 6199, an act relating to the CDE program which requires DSHS to contract with up to two CDE vendors to be the legal employer of individual providers for the purposes of performing administrative functions. ($5.3M GF-S; $11.2M Total Funds; 0.5 FTE)
- Restore Workload/Lease Funding: The staffing levels and increased lease costs identified in the 2019-21 Biennial Budget were not fully funded. Full funding is required to ensure that people with developmental disabilities receive the services and supports they need in a timely manner. ($1.3M GF-S; $2.3M Total Funds; 8.2 FTE)
- Service Plan Signatures: DSHS is required by federal rule to implement new processes necessary to ensure compliance with federal requirements to collect provider signatures on all service care plans. ($893,000 GF-S; $1.5M Total Funds; 6.4 FTE)
- Agency Provider Parity Definitions: Funding is provided for employer taxes for home care agency providers, supporting agency request legislation which would change the agency parity methodology so that future parity will provide suﬃcient funding to home care agencies to pay required employer taxes. ($75,000 GF-S; $171,000 Total Funds)
- Asset Verification System: This is a continuation of the implementation of a federally-compliant asset veriﬁcation system for asset-based Medicaid eligibility decisions. ($45,000 GF-S; $89,000 Total Funds; 0.2 FTE)
DSHS: Transforming Lives