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Finding support and help: how your community can make a difference

On February 22, House and Senate budget conferees released their report on Virginia’s budget bill. The House and Senate are scheduled to vote on the budget bill tomorrow evening. The bill will then go to the Governor for his review and action. A summary of budget items can be found below and a more detailed side-by-side document (with amendment links) can be accessed here.

Summary of the Conference Committee Report:

Developmental Disability (DD) Waiver Waiting List:

  • Includes 144 additional Family and Individual Support (FIS) Waivers, which combined with those included in the Governor’s budget, will provide a total of 494 Waivers for individuals and families on the Developmental Disability (DD) Waiver waiting list. These Waivers are expected to become available July 1, 2017.

  • Directs DBHDS to provide a report on the management and characteristics of individuals on the waiting list for services through the Developmentally Disabilities (DD) Waiver programs. The report shall include (i) the age of individuals on the waiting list, and (ii) the number of individuals designated as Priority 1, 2 and 3 on the waiting list. The department shall submit this report by October 15, 2017 to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees.”

Developmental Disability (DD) Waiver Redesign:

  • Directs DBHDS to implement a customized rate for individuals with complex support needs who receive sponsored residential services.

  • Directs the DMAS and DBHDS to establish and convene an annual stakeholders workgroup on issues related to the developmental disability waiver programs. Specifically, the workgroup will examine issues related to the tools to assess individual support needs, the assigned payment levels for providers, and the communication of these matters to individuals, families, case managers, providers and others.

  • Requires a study to collect information and feedback related to payments to “family homes” and the impact of changes to the rates on family homes statewide from sponsored residential providers and family home providers.

  • Directs DBHDS to provide a progress report on the implementation of the Developmental Disability (DD) Waiver programs to include information about the population served by the waivers, the level and reimbursement tier, and service utilization and expenses for (i) individuals who have used waiver services for less than one year and (ii) individuals who have used waiver services for 1-5 years. The department shall submit this report by October 15, 2017 to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees.

Training Centers:

  • Proceeds with the closure of Southwestern Virginia Training Center (SWVTC) and Central Virginia Training Center (CVTC). The three bills to keep Training Centers open (SB1551, HB 1583 and HB 1972) were all defeated.

  • Allocates revenues obtained from sale of Training Center land to further expand community services for people with significant medical or behavioral support needs.

  • Requires the Joint Committee on Training Center closures and the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) to develop and evaluate a plan for consideration of operating a smaller state Training Center. The Joint Subcommittees must take review “operating costs, capital costs and other relevant factors into consideration.”

  • Requires the Department of General Services (DGS) to conduct an environmental assessment needed to assess real property at CVTC.

  • The budget provides a 2% raise for positions at Training Centers that are high turnover.

Cost-Sharing (and other JLARC Recommendations):

  • Requires DMAS to develop a proposal for cost sharing requirements based on family income for individuals with long term services and supports and submit to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to determine if such a proposal is feasible. Adds language clarifying that no cost sharing requirements shall be implemented unless approved by the General Assembly.

  • Requires DMAS to assess and report on additional or different resources need to implement recommendations in the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee (JLARC) report “Managing Spending in Virginia’s Medicaid Program.”


  • Under the Joint Subcommittee for Health and Human Resources Oversight, establishes a workgroup to examine the options and determine actions necessary to better manage the equality and costs of private day educational programs currently funded through CSA (see side-by-side document for details)

  • Shifts $150,000 each year from principal training to assistance for teacher professional development on the subject of issues related to high-needs students.

DBHDS Trust Fund:

  • Provides $8,550,000 from the DBHDS Trust Fund to be used for: (i) development of behavior/medical intense programs; (ii) subsidies for capital costs associated with rental units; (iii) establishment of a House Call Program in Northern Virginia; (iv) support for individual crisis events; and (v) development of providers in Virginia for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities with significant behavioral and mental health needs.

Consumer Directed Services:

  • Reinstates the prohibition on overtime for consumer-directed services.

  • Also requires DMAS to establish an “Electronic Visit Verification” program.

Special Joint Committee for Health and Human Resources Oversight:

  • Establishes a Joint Subcommittee for Health and Human Resources Oversight to respond to federal health care changes, provide oversight of the Medicaid and children’s health insurance programs, and provide oversight of Health and Human Resources agency operations.)

Health and Human Resources Systems Transformation:

  • Provides $250,000 for the HHR Systems Transformation Initiative:


  • Restores $200,000 in fiscal year 2017 from the general fund for the Long -Term Employment Support Services (LTESS) program.

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