Legislative Update - Week of May 20, 2011

The Legislature, while constitutionally required to adjourn by the last Friday of this month, is attempting to complete its work by tomorrow. With a few hang-ups that needed to be resolved, the body has largely completed the budget process.  Conference committee meetings are still occurring.

Passing this week were bills such as:

SB232 - Creating a Task Force on Healthier Neighborhood Living;

SB878- a complete replacement of Worker's Compensation statutes.

Also, SB709, which was originally related to senior nutrition services and DCS, was amended in the House to include a section that would limit the types of entities that may have WIC contracts for distribution of resources.  In effect, the language would have prohibited private, non-profit entities with counties with populations of 400,000 or more from having WIC contracts.  Earlier this week it was reported in committee that the conferees could not agree indicating the bill as written was expected to have ceased to proceed for the year.

HB1995 passed the House late Wednesday.  The bill would require certain hospitals to maintain a certain level of malpractice coverage, and require physicians with hospital admitting privileges to maintain malpractice insurance with a minimum of a $1,000,000 coverage amount.  The bill was amended to exempt physicians with Federal Tort Claims Act coverage.  The bill is on the Senate agenda for Thursday.

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