Legislative Update

SB 219 (Wiener) LGBT rights and lawsuits – Oppose Unless Amended

This bill addresses LGBT rights – policy goals that CALA believes in – but also creates a new private right of action for RCFEs, ignoring existing remedies and driving unnecessary lawsuits. CALA has long advocated for welcoming, inclusive environments for all seniors and has been directly involved in establishing laws that ensure our LGBT residents have a positive experience in our communities. However, the current enforcement system and existing protections against discrimination already provide appropriate remedies. CALA is working with Senator Wiener in an effort to find a more constructive approach. The bill passed the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this week and will next be heard in Senate Appropriations Committee. Since the bill also impacts nursing homes, CAHF, CHA and LeadingAge are also opposed.

SB 648 (Mendoza) Referral agencies – Oppose Unless Amended

This bill was recently amended to remove the primary proactive consumer disclosure protections and instead requires RCFEs to make the disclosure about referral agency fees upon move-in, long after the point of being useful to consumers. The bill no longer requires the referral agency to let consumers know how they get paid, whether they only refer to communities that they have a contract with, or if they’ve ever visited the facilities they’re referring to. Instead, RCFEs would be required to have residents sign a disclosure form at move-in or face a fine. CALA is advocating for appropriate disclosure at the appropriate time. The bill was heard in Senate Human Services Committee earlier this week where committee members made it clear that they agreed with us and Senator Mendoza committed to correcting the disclosure timing problem. We will be meeting with the author and sponsor is the days ahead to make this correction and offer additional suggestions for improving this bill.

AB 859 (Eggman) Elder abuse standard of proof – Oppose

This bill would lower the current evidentiary standard for obtaining enhanced remedies available under California’s elder abuse laws from “clear and convincing” to a lower “preponderance of the evidence” standard. CALA is part of a large coalition opposing this bill sponsored by the Consumer Attorneys of California. The bill will be heard in the Assembly Judiciary Committee next week.

AB 1437 (Patterson) RCFE clearances and licenses – Support

This bill provides efficiencies for CCLD and licensees by eliminating the requirement to transfer a criminal clearance among a licensee’s communities. Under this bill, a cleared employee will be associated with all communities under the same license, saving significant time for CCLD and the licensee. The bill also makes a technical but important clarification which eliminates the requirement that, in order to get a new license, a non-corporate applicant would have to have completed the RCFE administrator course within the last five years, even if the certification is kept current. This bill passed the Assembly Aging & Long-Term Care Committee earlier this week and will soon be heard in the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

SB 449 (Monning) Skilled nursing and intermediate care facilities: training programs – Support

This bill, sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, would increase the amount of dementia care training that Certified Nurse Assistants (CNAs) receive during their initial certification. The bill sailed out of the Senate Health committee and the Senate and is now in the Assembly.

AB 713 (Chu) CCRC transfers – Watch

This bill would require CCRCs to use an assessment tool when determining whether a resident needs to transfer within the community to a higher level of care and require the Continuing Care Contracts Branch to review a disputed transfer and determine if the transfer was appropriate and necessary. CALA’s CCRC Subcommittee is closely watching this bill. It recently passed the Assembly Aging & Long-Term Care Committee and is now in Assembly Appropriations.

AB 853 (Choi) CCRC pooling contracts – Watch

This bill would authorize CCRC “pooling” contracts where entrance fee repayment is contingent upon resale of the next unit, rather than the resident’s specific unit. It would also make changes to the timing of construction approvals and use of surety bonds to satisfy liquid reserve obligations. This bill has not been heard in committee and is now a “two-year bill” meaning it won’t be considered until next year, if at all. CALA’s CCRC Subcommittee is watching this bill.

Read about how recent legislation affects RCFEs and DSS, and visit our visit our Advocacy History page to see our legislative priorities from previous years.