Connecticut Seal

House Bill No. 6351

Public Act No. 09-8

AN ACT CONCERNING THE LEGISLATIVE COMMISSIONERS' RECOMMENDATIONS FOR TECHNICAL REVISIONS TO THE HUMAN SERVICES STATUTES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Subsection (a) of section 17b-8 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall submit an application for a federal waiver of any assistance program requirements, except such application pertaining to routine operational issues, to the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to human services and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies prior to the submission of such application to the federal government. Not later than thirty days after the date of their receipt of such application, the joint standing committees shall: (1) Hold a public hearing on the waiver application, and (2) thereafter advise the commissioner of their approval, denial or modifications, if any, of the commissioner's application. If the joint standing committees advise the commissioner of their denial of the commissioner's application, the commissioner shall not submit the application for a federal waiver to the federal government. If such committees do not concur, the committee chairpersons shall appoint a committee of conference which shall be [comprised] composed of three members from each joint standing committee. At least one member appointed from each joint standing committee shall be a member of the minority party. The report of the committee of conference shall be made to each joint standing committee, which shall vote to accept or reject the report. The report of the committee of conference may not be amended. If a joint standing committee rejects the report of the committee of conference, that joint standing committee shall notify the commissioner of the rejection and the commissioner's application shall be deemed approved. If the joint standing committees accept the report, the committee having cognizance of matters relating to appropriations and the budgets of state agencies shall advise the commissioner of their approval, denial or modifications, if any, of the commissioner's application. If the joint standing committees do not so advise the commissioner during the thirty-day period, the application shall be deemed approved. Any application for a federal waiver submitted by the commissioner, pursuant to this section, shall be in accordance with the approval or modifications, if any, of the joint standing committees of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to human services and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies.

Sec. 2. Subsection (b) of section 17b-192 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(b) Each person eligible for state-administered general assistance shall be entitled to receive medical care through a federally qualified health center or other primary care provider as determined by the commissioner. The Commissioner of Social Services shall determine appropriate service areas and shall, in the commissioner's discretion, contract with community health centers, other similar clinics, and other primary care providers, if necessary, to assure access to primary care services for recipients who live farther than a reasonable distance from a federally qualified health center. The commissioner shall assign and enroll eligible persons in federally qualified health centers and with any other providers contracted for the program because of access needs. Each person eligible for state-administered general assistance shall be entitled to receive hospital services. Medical services under the program shall be limited to the services provided by a federally qualified health center, hospital, or other provider contracted for the program at the commissioner's discretion because of access needs. The commissioner shall ensure that ancillary services and specialty services are provided by a federally qualified health center, hospital, or other providers contracted for the program at the commissioner's discretion. Ancillary services include, but are not limited to, radiology, laboratory, and other diagnostic services not available from a recipient's assigned primary-care provider, and durable medical equipment. Specialty services are services provided by a physician with a specialty that are not included in ancillary services. Ancillary or specialty services provided under the program shall not exceed such services provided under the state-administered general assistance program on July 1, 2003, except for nonemergency medical transportation and vision care services which may be provided on a limited basis within available appropriations. Notwithstanding any provision of this subsection, the commissioner may [, when determined cost effective,] provide, or require a contractor to provide, home health services or skilled nursing facility coverage for state-administered general assistance recipients being discharged from a chronic disease hospital when the provision of such services or coverage is determined to be cost effective by the commissioner.

Sec. 3. Subsection (a) of section 17b-261 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(a) Medical assistance shall be provided for any otherwise eligible person whose income, including any available support from legally liable relatives and the income of the person's spouse or dependent child, is not more than one hundred forty-three per cent, pending approval of a federal waiver applied for pursuant to subsection [(d)] (e) of this section, of the benefit amount paid to a person with no income under the temporary family assistance program in the appropriate region of residence and if such person is an institutionalized individual as defined in Section 1917(c) of the Social Security Act, 42 USC 1396p(c), and has not made an assignment or transfer or other disposition of property for less than fair market value for the purpose of establishing eligibility for benefits or assistance under this section. Any such disposition shall be treated in accordance with Section 1917(c) of the Social Security Act, 42 USC 1396p(c). Any disposition of property made on behalf of an applicant or recipient or the spouse of an applicant or recipient by a guardian, conservator, person authorized to make such disposition pursuant to a power of attorney or other person so authorized by law shall be attributed to such applicant, recipient or spouse. A disposition of property ordered by a court shall be evaluated in accordance with the standards applied to any other such disposition for the purpose of determining eligibility. The commissioner shall establish the standards for eligibility for medical assistance at one hundred forty-three per cent of the benefit amount paid to a family unit of equal size with no income under the temporary family assistance program in the appropriate region of residence. Except as provided in section 17b-277, as amended by this act, the medical assistance program shall provide coverage to persons under the age of nineteen with family income up to one hundred eighty-five per cent of the federal [proverty] poverty level without an asset limit and to persons under the age of nineteen and their parents and needy caretaker relatives, who qualify for coverage under Section 1931 of the Social Security Act, with family income up to one hundred eighty-five per cent of the federal poverty level without an asset limit. Such levels shall be based on the regional differences in such benefit amount, if applicable, unless such levels based on regional differences are not in conformance with federal law. Any income in excess of the applicable amounts shall be applied as may be required by said federal law, and assistance shall be granted for the balance of the cost of authorized medical assistance. All contracts entered into on and after July 1, 1997, pursuant to this section shall include provisions for collaboration of managed care organizations with the Nurturing Families Network established pursuant to section 17a-56. The Commissioner of Social Services shall provide applicants for assistance under this section, at the time of application, with a written statement advising them of (1) the effect of an assignment or transfer or other disposition of property on eligibility for benefits or assistance, (2) the effect that having income that exceeds the limits prescribed in this subsection will have with respect to program eligibility, and (3) the availability of, and eligibility for, services provided by the Nurturing Families Network established pursuant to section 17a-56. Persons who are determined ineligible for assistance pursuant to this section shall be provided a written statement notifying such persons of their ineligibility and advising such persons of the availability of HUSKY Plan, Part B health insurance benefits.

Sec. 4. Subsection (a) of section 17b-261h of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(a) The Commissioner of Social Services shall, if required, seek a waiver from federal law for the purpose of enhancing the enrollment of HUSKY Plan, Part A recipients in available employer-sponsored private health insurance. Such a waiver shall include, but shall not be limited to, provisions that: (1) Require the enrollment of HUSKY Plan, Part A parents, needy caretaker relatives and dependents in any available employer-sponsored health insurance to the maximum extent of available coverage as a condition of eligibility when determined to be cost effective by the Department of Social Services; (2) require a subsidy to be paid directly to the HUSKY Plan, Part A caretaker relative in an amount equal to the premium payment requirements of any available employer-sponsored health insurance paid by way of payroll deduction; and (3) assure HUSKY Plan, Part A coverage requirements for medical assistance not covered by any available [employment-sponsored] employer-sponsored health insurance.

Sec. 5. Subsection (b) of section 17b-265 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(b) An applicant or recipient or legally liable relative, by the act of the [applicant] applicant's or [recipient] recipient's receiving medical assistance, shall be deemed to have made a subrogation assignment and an assignment of claim for benefits to the department. The department shall inform an applicant of such assignments at the time of application. Any entitlements from a contractual agreement with an applicant or recipient, legally liable relative or a state or federal program for such medical services, not to exceed the amount expended by the department, shall be so assigned. Such entitlements shall be directly reimbursable to the department by third party payors. The Department of Social Services may assign its right to subrogation or its entitlement to benefits to a designee or a health care provider participating in the Medicaid program and providing services to an applicant or recipient, in order to assist the provider in obtaining payment for such services. In accordance with subsection (b) of section 38a-472, a provider that has received an assignment from the department shall notify the recipient's health insurer or other legally liable third party including, but not limited to, a self-insured plan, group health plan, as defined in Section 607(1) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, service benefit plan, managed care organization, health care center, pharmacy benefit manager, dental benefit manager or other party that is, by statute, contract or agreement, legally responsible for payment of a claim for a health care item or service, of the assignment upon rendition of services to the applicant or recipient. Failure to so notify the health insurer or other legally liable third party shall render the provider ineligible for payment from the department. The provider shall notify the department of any request by the applicant or recipient or legally liable relative or representative of such applicant or recipient for billing information. This subsection shall not be construed to affect the right of an applicant or recipient to maintain an independent cause of action against such third party tortfeasor.

Sec. 6. Subsection (c) of section 17b-265e of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(c) The Department of Social Services shall, in accordance with the provisions of this section, pay claims for prescription drugs for Medicare Part D beneficiaries, who are also either Medicaid or ConnPACE recipients and who are denied coverage by the Medicare Part D plan in which such beneficiary is enrolled because a prescribed drug is not on the formulary utilized by such Medicare Part D plan. Payment shall initially be made by the department for a thirty-day supply, subject to any applicable copayment. Pharmaceutical manufacturers shall pay rebate amounts established pursuant to section 17b-491 to the department for prescriptions paid by the department pursuant to this section on or after January 1, 2007. The beneficiary shall appoint the commissioner as such beneficiary's representative for the purpose of appealing any denial of Medicare Part D benefits and for any other purpose allowed under [said act] Public Law 108-173, the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 and deemed necessary by the commissioner.

Sec. 7. Subsection (c) of section 17b-277 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(c) On or before September 30, 2007, the Commissioner of Social Services [,] shall submit a state plan amendment or, if required by the federal government, seek a waiver under federal law to provide health insurance coverage to pregnant women, who do not otherwise have creditable coverage, as defined in 42 USC 300gg(c), and who have income above one hundred eighty-five per cent of the federal poverty level but not in excess of two hundred fifty per cent of the federal poverty level. Following approval of such state plan amendment or approval of such waiver application, the commissioner, on or before January 1, 2008, shall implement the provisions of subsections (a) and (b) of this section.

Sec. 8. Subsection (j) of section 17b-292 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(j) Not later than ten months after the determination of eligibility for benefits under the HUSKY Plan, Part A and Part B and annually thereafter, the commissioner or the servicer, as the case may be, shall, within existing budgetary resources, mail or, upon request of a participant, electronically transmit an application form to each participant in the plan for the purposes of obtaining information to make a determination on continued eligibility beyond the twelve months of initial eligibility. To the extent permitted by federal law, in determining eligibility for benefits under the HUSKY Plan, Part A or Part B with respect to family income, the commissioner or the servicer shall rely upon information provided in such form by the participant unless the commissioner or the servicer has reason to believe that such information is inaccurate or incomplete. The Department of Social Services shall annually review a random sample of cases to confirm that, based on the statistical sample, relying on such information is not resulting in ineligible clients receiving benefits under HUSKY Plan Part A or Part B. The determination of eligibility shall be coordinated with health plan open enrollment periods.

Sec. 9. Subsection (b) of section 17b-353 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(b) An applicant, prior to submitting a certificate of need application, shall request, in writing, application forms and instructions from the department. The request shall include: (1) The name of the applicant or applicants; (2) a statement indicating whether the application is for (A) a new, additional, expanded or replacement facility, service or function, (B) a termination or reduction in a presently authorized service or bed capacity, or (C) any new, additional or terminated beds and their type; (3) the estimated capital cost; (4) the town where the project is or will be located; and (5) a brief description of the proposed project. Such request shall be deemed a letter of intent. No certificate of need application shall be considered submitted to the department unless a current letter of intent, specific to the proposal and in accordance with the provisions of this subsection, has been on file with the department for not less than ten business days. For purposes of this subsection, "a current letter of intent" means a letter of intent on file with the department for not more than one hundred eighty days. A certificate of need application shall be deemed withdrawn by the department if a department completeness letter is not responded to within one hundred eighty days.

Sec. 10. Subsections (c), (d) and (e) of section 46a-33a of the general statutes are repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(c) No person shall provide interpreting services unless such person is registered with the commission according to the provisions of this section and (1) has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf certification knowledge examination, holds a level three certification provided by the National Association of the Deaf, documents the achievement of two continuing education units per year for a maximum of five years of commission-approved training, and on or before the fifth anniversary of having passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf certification knowledge examination, has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf performance examination or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf national interpreter certification examination, (2) has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf certification knowledge examination and is a graduate of an accredited interpreter training program and documents the achievement of two continuing education units per year for a maximum of five years of commission-approved training, and on or before the fifth anniversary of having passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf certification knowledge examination, has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf performance examination or the National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf national interpreter certification examination, (3) holds a level four or higher certification from the National Association of the Deaf, (4) holds certification by the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (5) for situations requiring an oral interpreter only, holds oral certification from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (6) for situations requiring a cued speech transliterator only, holds certification from the National Training, Evaluation and Certification Unit and has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test, (7) holds a reverse skills certificate or is a certified deaf interpreter under the National Registry of Interpreters [of] for the Deaf, or (8) holds a National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf national interpreting certificate.

(d) No person shall provide interpreting services in a medical setting unless such person is registered with the commission according to the provisions of this section and [holds] (1) holds a comprehensive skills certificate from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (2) holds a certificate of interpretation or a certificate of transliteration from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (3) holds a level four or higher certification from the National Association of the Deaf, (4) holds a reverse skills certificate or is a certified deaf interpreter under the National Registry of Interpreters [of] for the Deaf, (5) for situations requiring an oral interpreter only, holds oral certification from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (6) for situations requiring a cued speech transliterator only, holds certification from the National Training, Evaluation and Certification Unit and has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test, or (7) holds a National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf national interpreting certificate.

(e) No person shall provide interpreting services in a legal setting unless such person is registered with the commission according to the provisions of this section and [holds] (1) holds a comprehensive skills certificate from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (2) holds a certificate of interpretation and a certificate of transliteration from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (3) holds a level five certification from the National Association of the Deaf, (4) holds a reverse skills certificate or is a certified deaf interpreter under the National Registry of Interpreters [of] for the Deaf, (5) for situations requiring an oral interpreter only, holds oral certification from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, (6) for situations requiring a cued speech transliterator only, holds certification from the National Training, Evaluation and Certification Unit and has passed the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf written generalist test, or (7) holds a National Association of the Deaf-National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf national interpreting certificate.

Sec. 11. Subdivision (3) of subsection (a) of section 46b-160 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(3) (A) The court, or any judge [,] or family support magistrate [,] assigned to said court, shall cause a summons, signed by such judge or magistrate, by the clerk of said court, or by a commissioner of the Superior Court to be issued, requiring the putative father to appear in court at a time and place as determined by the clerk but not more than ninety days after the issuance of the summons to show cause why the request for relief in such petition should not be granted.

(B) A state marshal, proper officer or investigator shall make due return of process to the court not less than twenty-one days before the date assigned for hearing. In the case of a child or expectant mother being supported wholly or in part by the state, service of such petition may be made by any investigator employed by the Department of Social Services and any proper officer authorized by law.

Sec. 12. Subsection (f) of section 46b-212j of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(f) The family support magistrate that determines by order which is the controlling order under [subdivisions] subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (b) or subsection (c) of this section or that issues a new controlling order under subdivision (3) of subsection (b) of this section, shall state in the order: (1) The basis upon which the tribunal made its determination; (2) the amount of prospective support, if any; and (3) the total amount of consolidated arrears and accrued interest, if any, under all of the orders after all payments made are credited as provided by section 46b-212l.

Sec. 13. Subsection (b) of section 46b-212p of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(b) If requested by the responding tribunal, the family support magistrate shall issue a certificate or other document and make findings required by the law of the responding state. If the responding state is a foreign country or political subdivision, upon request, the family support magistrate shall specify the amount of support sought, convert that amount into the equivalent amount in the foreign currency under the applicable official or market exchange rate as publicly reported and provide any other documents necessary to satisfy the requirements of the responding state.

Sec. 14. Subsection (a) of section 46b-213q of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of section 46b-213r, in any matter where the Family Support Magistrate Division does not have jurisdiction pursuant to subsection (f) of this section, upon petition a family support magistrate may modify a child support order issued in another state which is registered in this state if, after notice and hearing, such magistrate finds that: (1) The following requirements are met: (A) Neither the child, nor the obligee who is an individual nor the obligor resides in the issuing state; (B) a petitioner who is a nonresident of this state seeks modification; and (C) the respondent is subject to the personal jurisdiction of the Family Support Magistrate Division; or (2) this state is the state of residence of the child or a party who is an individual is subject to the personal jurisdiction of the Family Support Magistrate Division and all of the parties who are individuals have filed consents in a record in the issuing tribunal for a family support magistrate to modify the support order and assume continuing exclusive jurisdiction.

Sec. 15. Subsection (d) of section 46b-213w of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2009):

(d) The employer shall treat an income withholding order issued in another state which appears regular on its face as if it had been issued by a tribunal of this state.

Sec. 16. Subsection (a) of section 17b-112e of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2009):

(a) The Department of Social Services shall provide safety net services for certain families identified as having significant barriers to employment and families who are at risk of losing benefits under the temporary family assistance program or no longer receiving program benefits. [Such] To be eligible for safety net services, such families shall: [include those: ] (1) [Identified] Have been identified as having significant barriers to employment during the initial assessment by the department's eligibility worker or during the first twelve months of employment services by an employment services case manager; (2) [who] have made a good faith effort to seek and maintain employment but have not been able to do so or [who are] be at risk of failing to complete the employment services program; (3) [who] have exhausted their eligibility for temporary family assistance program benefits; [and] or (4) [who are] not be eligible for six-month extensions of temporary family assistance benefits due to: (A) The receipt of two sanctions from the department during the first twenty months of the twenty-one-month time limit of said temporary family assistance program; or (B) the determination by the department that such a family has not made a good-faith effort to seek and maintain employment.

Approved May 4, 2009