This is an informal rundown of the legislative happenings. This update is from the most recent legislative day – 02/15/23, or Day 19.
HB 85 – Rep. Sharon Cooper
WHAT IT DOES:
- Addresses insurance coverage and biomarkers (for things like gene mutation, etc)
- Defines Biomarkers, biomarker testing, ‘consensus statements,’ ‘health benefit policy’ and ‘care management organizations’ to make sure it’s not just applied to traditional insurance companies.
- Requires all health insurance plans to cover biomarker testing if the when the plan is new or renewed after July 1, 2023
- The testing must be covered if it’s relevant to the patient’s treatment plan or would assist in:
–a labeled test or indication approved by the FDA
— an indicated test for a drug approved by the FDA
–a national coverage determination made by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services or a local coverage determination made by a medicare administrative contractor
–Nationally recognized clinical practice guidelines and consensus statements
–Warnings and precautions on FDA approved drugs
- Also requires the insurance company to approve or deny the request within 72 hours if it’s not urgent and within 24 hours if it is urgent.
- Insurance companies are also required to act in a way that limits access to care. How is that measured or enforced?
CONCERN: Requiring insurance companies to do anything is very ‘Obama circa 2010.’ It drives up everyone’s costs and makes health insurance less and less affordable. It’s also not the proper role of government, unless this was only for state-backed plans. I understand she’s trying to streamline things to improve what info the FDA and other federal entities have, but this is too isolated to actually have an impact. It just helps the FDA ‘this time’ for ‘this specific thing.’
PASSED: 172-2 (NO VOTES: Reps Byrd and Horner)
HB 87 – Rep. Chris Erwin
WHAT IT DOES:
- Creates the ‘Nontraditional Special Schools Act’ – protects funding for certain types of charter schools
- Applies to state charter schools approved before 6/30/21 → if the state charter school did not transition to an ‘alternative charter school’ by that date would now operate under Georgia’s classification of a ‘state chartered special schooll’
- Strikes the language to allow future transitions from state charter school to ‘alternative charter school’
- Adds language to address schools operating as system collaborative state charter schools for the remainder of their charters
- Allowing them to operate a special charter school until the end of the school’s charter and still receive funding from the State Board of Education
- Strikes language that says schools that did not transition to system collaborative state charter schools by 7/1/21 are not eligible for state funding
- Adds language to give schools the opportunity to select their charter school status by 7/1/23 or to cease operating as a state chartered special school upon the expiration of its current charter with the State Board of Education/funds will be at risk
- Now identifies them as completion special school
- Clarifies language about the State Board of Education having the opportunity to deny expansion of an attendance zone for a charter school
- Gives the State School Board up to $5 million to provide ‘grants’ for the purpose of creating new completion special schools
- Also charges the State Board of Education with coming up with rules and regulations for the governance of these schools and orders that they’re still public schools for guidelines about drop outs, credit recovery and the like.
- Dictates what it does for all charter schools – which is who sits on t board (local superintendent) and how their funding is designed based on QBE
CONCERNS: Appears to the be reorganizing the ‘types’ of charter schools available for the purposes of protecting their funding and keep control in the non-elected State Board of Education.
HB 91 – Rep. Will Wade
WHAT IT DOES:
- Changes notice requirements for people who are beneficiaries of wills.
- Specifically, a representative of an estate is required to:
- send notice to any and all beneficiaries within 30 days of issuing notice letters
- File notice with the probate court within 60 days
- If these deadlines are not met, may be required to show cause for why they did not adhere to the requirements and could be required to have a hearing before a judge.
- Also adds requirements for investment management accounts
HB 132 – Rep. David Jenkins
WHAT IT DOES:
- Allows for the use of ungraded lumber in some instances
- Specifically, on “construction or repair of any accessory structure not containing habitable space on property zoned or primarily used for residential or agricultural purposes”
- Rules for allowing this must be in place “on or after” July 1, 2024.
CONCERNS: None. #FreeTheLumber
HB 182 – Rep. Matt Reeves
WHAT IT DOES:
- Strikes language regarding deeds and them not being attested to in a proper manner
- According to the committee hearing, this makes the code section about deeds match another code section about savings so that improperly executed instruments can be corrected at the same time with the same process (which is already in place for the savings statute)
PASSED: 171-0 (NO VOTE: Rep. Bruce Williamson)