Legislative Update


AB 839 (Addis) RCFE Financing – Support

AB 839 updates the California Health Facilities Financing Authority Act (CHFFA) to enable not-for-profit RCFEs to access CHFFA financing and funding programs. The CHFFA program currently serves community care facility settings but does not recognize similar stand-alone residential care facilities serving the elderly. Currently, only RCFEs that are associated with a skilled nursing facility have access to this program. AB 839 would correct that discrepancy. CALA secured amendments that enabled us to support this bill.

AB 979 (Alvarez) Long-term care: family councils – Opposition Removed

This bill modernizes the existing family council statute for RCFEs and SNFs, primarily by recognizing virtual meetings and helping ensure designated individuals are aware of council meetings, among other things. CALA secured amendments to maintain the current response time for family council letters, maintain that “willful” interference is prohibited, and maintain that residents in RCFEs will not be prohibited from activities during family council meetings, among other things.

AB 1417 (Wood) Elder and dependent adult abuse: mandated reporting – Opposition Removed

CALA is supportive of provisions of this bill that streamline the complex elder abuse reporting process and appreciates the amendments that at least partially acknowledge situations involving dementia-related behaviors. CALA continues to have concerns about reporting dementia-related altercations to law enforcement, however, federal law that currently requires such reports for many LTC facilities has set a precedent. CALA will continue to work on ways to mitigate any possible negative impact on those with dementia.

SB 525 (Durazo) Minimum wage: health care workers – Oppose

SB 525 imposes a $25 minimum wage for “health care workers” and will result in significant cost increases throughout the healthcare sector and for senior living due to the direct impact and significant wage pressures. Late amendments on the Assembly Floor that removed a lot of the opposition and secured the bill’s passage, established various phase-in schedules based on a number of factors including health care facility size, facility type and payor mix. The amendments also preempt city and county minimum wage ballot initiatives for 10 years and preempt local executive compensation cap ballot initiatives for six years.

For RCFEs affiliated with an acute care provider or owned, operated or controlled by a general acute care hospital, acute psychiatric hospital, or the parent entity of a general acute care hospital, and for licensed skilled nursing facilities operated or controlled by a hospital or health system, as defined, the minimum wage for all covered health care employees will be as follows:

  • From June 1, 2024, to May 31, 2026, inclusive, $21 per hour
  • From June 1, 2026, to May 31, 2028, inclusive, $23 per hour
  • From June 1, 2028, and until adjusted, $25 per hour

CALA was part of a large opposition coalition. Thank you to members who wrote opposition letters and expressed opposition directly to legislators during CALA’s Day in Your District.

2-Year Bills

AB 21 (Gipson) Peace officers: training — Support

This bill, sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, is a reintroduction of last year’s AB 2583 (Mullin), and would require police officers receive dementia-specific training to help with interactions with people living with dementia. AB 21 is currently on the Assembly Appropriations Suspense File.

AB 387 (Aguiar-Curry) Alzheimer’s disease – Support

AB 387 (Aguiar-Curry), sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, would expand the number and representation on the Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Advisory Committee and rename it the Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Conditions Advisory Committee. This bill was held in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

AB 423 (Maienschein) Wandering Taskforce — Support

Would create a wandering taskforce to make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature about unsafe wandering. This bill was held on the Assembly Appropriations Suspense File.                                                                                                                                           

AB 770 (Kalra) 6 Beds

Would allow a six bed RCFE to add capacity consistent with the size of the home it’s located in, while still enjoying the exemption from conditional use permits and other related zoning requirements that currently apply to six beds. Recent amendments require 30% of beds over six to be set aside for low-income or SSI/SSP residents with no clarification of how low-income would be determined or documented or enforced or consideration of the RCFE’s economic viability. There were also other unanswered and unresolved issues related to this bill and its unintended consequences. This bill was held on the Assembly Appropriations Suspense File.

SB 375 (Alvarado-Gil) Employment: employer contributions: employee withholdings: COVID-19 regulatory compliance credit – Support

SB 375 would provide a COVID compliance tax credit to employers. This bill is supported by a broad coalition including CalChamber, the California Association of Winegrape Growers and California Association of Health Facilities. This bill was held on the Senate Appropriations Suspense File.

SB 639 (Limón) Alzheimer’s disease – Support

SB 639 (Limón), sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, would provide a comprehensive approach to the diagnosis, treatment and education of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias across the state and encourage the creation of diagnostic hubs to help secure access to new clinical therapies coming to market. This bill would also continue and expand upon the cognitive health assessment training and validated tool for Medi-Cal beneficiaries and provide information to persons diagnosed with dementia and their care partners about home- and community-based services. The author pulled the bill from consideration and it is inactive for now.

SB 730 (Ochoa Bogh) Home Care Aides — Watch

Would expand care that home care aides are allowed to provide to include assisting clients with medication self-administration. This bill was held on the Senate Appropriations Suspense File.

SB 809 (Smallwood-Cuevas) California Fair Employment and Housing Act: Fair Chance Act: conviction history — Oppose Unless Amended

CALA is part of a large CalChamber-led coalition in opposition to this burdensome background check bill. The bill was amended in the Senate Judiciary Committee and we expect amendments will restore the exemption for employers required by law to conduct background checks, but would still require a duplicative appeals and assessment process for an employer that has no discretion over decisions made by CPMB. Other concerns include workplace posting requirements and extensive information that would have to be included in every job advertisement. SB 809 was held on the Senate Appropriations Suspense File.

SB 875 (Glazer) Referral Agencies – Support

SB 875 is a reintroduction of AB 499 (Rubio, Blanca) from last session. CALA again supports legislation to require basic disclosure and consumer protections related to referral agencies. With some surprising opposition from the State Long Term Care Ombudsman, the bill was pulled from Senate Human Services Committee agenda.