The legislature is beginning the first year of the two-year process. On December 5th California’s legislature was sworn-in and included a record high number of 33 freshman members (3 of whom have previously served in office). Both the Assembly and the Senate will continue to have a super-majority vote threshold allowing them the ability to pass critical legislation more easily. To date members of the legislature have introduced just about 100 bills which will increase to at least 1,000 or more pieces of new proposed legislation by the deadline of February 17th with a key policy deadline in April. Before the new year, leadership of both houses named chairs for key committees. Dr. Jim Wood remains chair of Assembly Health Committee and Dr. Juaquin Arambula remains chair of Assembly Budget Sub Committee #1 on Health and Human Services. In the Senate, Susan Eggman has been named chair of Senate Health Committee and freshman Caroline Menjivar has been named chair of Senate Budget Sub Committee #3 Health and Human Services.
On January 10th Governor Gavin Newsom released his proposed 2023-24 budget, which included a $297 billion balanced budget with a shortfall of $22.5 billion (during the fall the Department of Finance had projected almost $25 billion deficit). The Governor noted highlights which included protecting resources for homelessness/housing, setting aside $35.6 billion in reserves and keeping promises. Also noted were funding delays, reductions, and funding shifts.
The budget and thousands of bills will be debated this year, with advocacy efforts from all stakeholders to protect and preserve scarce dollars. In May the Department of Finance will release the “May Revise” based on April tax receipts which will give California a better fiscal outlook and allow for adjustments during the budget process. California’s budget needs to be resolved and signed by the Governor on or before June 15th.
What is State Advocacy?
As hospital CEO’s and leaders in the community, your voice carries weight in the Capitol. Not only are California hospitals providers of health care, in many cases they are the largest employers and partners in the community. Use your voice to let legislators know how a particular piece of legislation will impact your hospital, community and the patients you serve.
Why State Advocacy Matters?
Everyday California legislators are faced with policy decisions – decisions that will impact every aspect of life and business in this state. Responding to alerts for phone calls to legislators and writing support and opposition letters is an effective way of registering your position. Not only will your letters be listed on analyses, they will be delivered to legislators and used to lobby DHLF’s position on legislation.
Other ways to engage in advocacy:
- Invite your legislator and or their staff to tour your facility. Explain the type of services you provide, how many patients your hospital treats each year and important issues affecting your hospital.
- Check to see if your legislator has a “community healthcare roundtable” or other type of community group where he/she meets regularly to discuss issues of concern for the legislative district. Participating in a community group will give you and or your staff the opportunity to hear issues that are concerning to the legislator and will allow you to open lines of communication with your legislator.
- Social media – follow your legislator on Twitter, Instagram and/or Facebook.
- Share what’s happening at your facility with your legislator and their staff, this will help keep them informed of important issues at your hospital.
- Address 950 Glenn Drive, Suite 250, Folsom, CA 95630
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone (916) 673-2020