2023 Utah Legislative Session Roundup
Disability Advocacy Day 2023
Here is a list of legislation—passed and failed—that will affect Utahns with disabilities and their families.
Failed; Would have provided ongoing funding for approx. 200 people considered as “high priority” on the waitlist for DSPD services.
Note: a one-time appropriation of $3 million was granted to fund respite care for people on the waiting list, separate from the bill.
3SHB 248 – Mental Health Services for Adults; Rep. Judkins
Passed; Will require Utah DHHS to create a long-term, statewide assertive community treatment (ACT) team plan for providing intensive wraparound services to individuals with serious mental illness. Specifically, the plan will (a) identify current and future statewide assertive community treatment needs, objectives, and priorities; (b) identify barriers to establishing an ACT team in areas where an ACT team does not currently exist; (c) identify the equipment, facilities, personnel training, and other resources necessary to provide assertive community treatment in areas where an ACT team does not currently exist; and (d) identify the gaps in housing needs for individuals served by ACT teams and how to ensure individuals served by ACT teams can secure and maintain housing. Bill also creates a grant program to develop ACT teams in Utah. $1M one-time.
Passed; Will amend the Medicaid waiver program for children with disabilities and complex medical conditions to provide greater ongoing funding and allow approx. 190 more children to be served on the Medically Complex Children’s Medicaid Waiver by the end of FY 2024. $995,300 ongoing from the General Fund and $1,955,500 ongoing from federal funds for the Department of Health and Human Services beginning in FY 2024, with ($551,000) one-time from the General Fund and ($1,015,000) one-time from federal funds in FY 2024 due to program ramp up; and $4,700 ongoing from the General Fund and $14,200 ongoing from federal funds for the Department of Workforce Services beginning in FY 2024, with ($1,600) one-time from the General Fund and ($4,800) one-time from federal funds in FY 2024 due to program ramp up. The legislation appropriates $1 million from the General Fund ongoing beginning in FY 2024.
Failed; Would have defined terms and described requirements, duties, and interactions with other laws related to supported decision-making. Would have provided an alternative to guardianship for individuals with disabilities in Utah.
HB 516 – Mental Health Treatment Study; Rep. Judkins
Failed; Would have required the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health to conduct a study on the delivery and accessibility of mental health treatment and supports in the state. $203.8K fiscal note.
Passed; Establishes the Utah Fits All Scholarship Program for students in lower-income households, including those with disabilities, to attend private school. Also increases teacher wages throughout Utah by $6,000. $42M fiscal note.
1SSB 106 – Caregiver Compensation Amendments; Sen. Harper
Passed; Provides ongoing funding for Caregiver Compensation for individuals receiving Home and Community-Based Services. Caregiver Comp. was established during the COVID-19 PHE in 2021 in response to individuals needing to be served at home due to the pandemic and a lack of service providers. 1SSB 106 will support parents and guardians to be paid as a service provider for individuals on this waiver. $1.734M fiscal note.