Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee; public hearings; room 214; Cross Building
L.D. 836, “An Act Regarding the Use of Mobile Poultry Processing Units”: adds mobile poultry processing unit operators to persons required to be licensed by the state to buy, sell, prepare, process, pack, store, transport or otherwise handle meat, meat food products or poultry products in the state.
L.D. 1286, “An Act To Protect Maine Communities by Prohibiting Horse Slaughter for Human Consumption and the Transport of Horses for Slaughter”: prohibits the slaughter of horses for human consumption; bans the possession, sale, purchase, transportation and import into or export out of this state of a horse or horseflesh if the person knows or should know that the horse is meant to be slaughtered for human consumption; and bans the construction or operation of a facility that the person knows or should know is used or will be used for the slaughter of horses for human consumption.
Energy, Utilities and Techonology Committee; public hearings; room 211; Cross Building
L.D. 1348, “An Act To Encourage School Administrative Units To Increase Their Energy Savings”: authorizes the Efficiency Maine Trust to develop an energy program targeted to kindergarten to grade 12 schools, including charter schools.
L.D. 1396, “An Act To Create the Lisbon Water District”: creates the Lisbon Water District.
L.D. 1425, “An Act To Create Affordable Heating Options for Maine Residents and Reduce Business Energy Costs”: governor’s bill, includes energy cost reduction as a central mission of the Efficiency Maine Trust.
L.D. 1426, “An Act To Improve Maine's Economy and Lower Energy Costs through Energy Efficiency”: repeals the base rate of .145 cents per kilowatt hour and requires the commission to ensure that all electric ratepayers procure all energy efficiency resources found by the commission to be cost-effective, reliable and achievable; establishes a voluntary heating fuels efficiency and weatherization payment imposed on the transfer of a barrel of #2 heating oil or kerosene or the equivalent amount of propane; prohibits transmission and distribution utilities and natural gas utilities from recovering costs from ratepayers for grants offered to a customer for fuel conversion of the customer’s primary heating or cooling system; and requires that at least 65 percent of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Trust Fund must be allocated for measures, investments and arrangements that reduce electricity consumption.
Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee; public hearings; room 206; Cross Building
L.D. 201, “An Act To Permit Tribal Members To Hunt Any Animal or Bird at Any Time for Sustenance”: provides that an enrolled member of the Passamaquoddy tribe, the Penobscot Nation, the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians or the Aroostook Band of Micmacs may hunt for, take and possess any wild animal or bird at any time for noncommercial consumption or noncommercial use.
L.D. 202, “An Act To Permit Tribal Members To Fish at Any Time for Sustenance”: provides that an enrolled member of the Passamaquoddy tribe, the Penobscot Nation, the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians or the Aroostook Band of Micmacs may fish for, take and possess any fish at any time for noncommercial consumption or noncommercial use.
L.D. 306, “An Act To Exempt Members of the Penobscot Nation, the Passamaquoddy Tribe, the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians and the Aroostook Band of Micmacs from Special Training Requirements for Archery and Trapping”: emergency bill, exempts an enrolled member of the Passamaquoddy tribe, the Penobscot Nation, the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians or the Aroostook Band of Micmacs from the archery, crossbow and trapping training requirements for obtaining an archery, a crossbow or a trapping license.
L.D. 600, “An Act To Include Archery Hunting Licenses among the Complimentary Licenses Issued to a Member of a Federally Recognized Indian Tribe, Nation or Band”: adds an archery hunting license to the list of complimentary licenses issued to members of federally recognized Indian nations, bands and tribes.
L.D. 1303, “Resolution, Proposing an Amendment to the Constitution of Maine To Establish the Right To Hunt and Fish”: provides that the citizens of Maine have the personal right to hunt, fish and harvest wildlife, subject to laws and rules that promote wildlife conservation and preserve the future of hunting and fishing, and to provide that public hunting and fishing are a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife.
Insurance and Financial Services Committee; work sessions; room 220; Cross Building
L.D. 161, “An Act To Prohibit a Health Insurance Carrier from Establishing a Separate Premium Rate Based on Geographic Area”: eliminates the ability of health insurers to establish a separate premium rate variation on the basis of geographic area and merges the rating bands for age and geographic area so that the combined rate differential due to age and geographic area may not exceed a ratio of 3 to 1 beginning Jan. 1, 2014.
L.D. 225, “An Act To Restore Consumer Rate Review for Health Insurance Plans in the Individual and Small Group Markets”: restores the statutory process for advance review and prior approval of individual health insurance rates and rescinds the changes to the rate review process for individual health insurance; extends the requirement for advance review and prior approval to small group health insurance rates; and requires the superintendent of Insurance to hold a hearing if a filing proposes an increase in rates in individual or small group health insurance plans and requires the superintendent to hold meetings in at least three locations to allow public comment.
L.D. 546, “An Act To Improve Transparency and Oversight of the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association and To Make Changes Necessary To Comply with Federal Law”: makes meetings of the Board of Directors of the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association public; adds two consumer members to the Board of Directors and reduces the number of board members who represent insurers to three; suspends the authority of the association to collect assessments and premiums or provide reinsurance and reimbursement for three years and also requires that the association submit a revised plan of operation to the superintendent of Insurance before resuming operations; provides that the association may not provide reinsurance or reimbursement to a member insurer unless the insurer meets the 80 percent minimum medical loss ratio for individual health insurance; and directs the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over insurance and financial services matters to evaluate the transitional reinsurance program operating in the state from Jan. 1, 2014 until Dec. 31, 2016 under federal law.
L.D. 681, “An Act To Improve Oversight of Insurance Rates and Ensure Consistency with Federal Law”: emergency bill, restores the statutory process for advance review and prior approval of individual health insurance rates and rescinds the changes to the rate review process for individual health insurance; extends the requirement for advance review and prior approval to small group health insurance rates; merges the rating bands for age, geographic area and tobacco use so that the combined rate differential due to age, geographic area and tobacco use may not exceed a ratio of 3 to 1 beginning July 1, 2013 for all individual and small group health insurance policies; authorizes the Superintendent of Insurance to adopt rules regarding rating based on tobacco use that set appropriate methodologies and standards that are consistent with the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; and does not permit rate variation that would penalize an individual who participates in a smoking cessation program or who is not provided the opportunity to participate in one.
L.D. 971, “An Act Regarding Exemptions under the Maine Insurance Code”: removes the exemption of health care sharing ministries from regulation as insurers.
L.D. 984, “An Act To Amend the Health Plan Improvement Law Regarding Prescription Drug Step Therapy and Prior Authorization”: reduces the time for health insurance carriers to respond to nonemergency prescription drug prior authorization requests to 24 hours.
L.D. 991, “An Act To Promote Wellness and Prevention through Health Plans”: gives authority to the superintendent of Insurance to approve pilot projects allowing health insurance carriers to offer health plans that include premium credits and other incentives to encourage enrollees to participate in wellness and prevention programs beginning Oct. 1.
L.D. 1067, “An Act To Allow Certain Small Retail Businesses To Pass Credit and Debit Card Transaction Fees on to Consumers”: allows a small retail business to impose a surcharge on a purchase of a customer who elects to use a credit card or debit card.
L.D. 1092, “An Act To Increase the Use of Long-term Care Insurance”: allows persons otherwise eligible for long-term care benefits under MaineCare that own life insurance policies with face amounts exceeding $10,000 to enter into life settlement contracts in exchange for direct payments to a health care provider for long-term care benefits.
L.D. 1167, “An Act Regarding the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association”: uspends the authority of the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association from Jan. 1, 2014 to Dec. 31, 2016 and directs the Board of Directors of the Maine Guaranteed Access Reinsurance Association to amend the association's plan of operation and submit the amendment on or before Oct. 1, 2013 to the Superintendent of Insurance for approval.
L.D. 1277, “An Act To Streamline the Charitable Solicitations Act”: raises the threshold for licensure of charitable organizations to $25,000 per calendar year, eliminates licensing of commercial co-venturers and requires licensees only to update changed information and requires licensees to notify the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation, Office of Professional and Occupational Regulation of any change in the application within 10 days.
L.D. 1345, “An Act To Establish a Single-payor Health Care System To Be Effective in 2017”: establishes the Maine Health Benefit Marketplace as the State's health benefit exchange; establishes the Maine Health Care Plan to provide security through high-quality, affordable health care for the people of the state; establishes the Maine Health Care Plan Transition Advisory Committee charged with holding public hearings, soliciting public comments and advising the Maine Health Care Agency on the transition from the current health care system to the Maine Health Care Plan; prohibits the sale on the commercial market of health insurance policies and contracts that duplicate the coverage provided by the Maine Health Care Plan; and directs the Maine Health Care Agency to submit two financing plans to the Legislature by Jan. 15, 2016.
Judiciary Committee; work sessions; room 438; State House
L.D. 725, “An Act To Implement the Recommendations of the Judicial Compensation Commission”: increases the salary of justices in the Supreme Judicial Court, Superior Court and District Court to provide a cost-of-living increase and changes the reporting deadline for the Judicial Compensation Commission to Dec. 15.
L.D. 744, “An Act To Extend the Statute of Limitations on Certain Civil Professional Negligence Suits”: extends the statute of limitations for professional negligence actions against health care providers and health care practitioners when the action is based on a sexual act or sexual contact that applies to all actions based on a sexual act or contact on or after the effective date.
L.D. 854, “An Act To Clarify When a Manufactured Home Becomes Residential Real Property”: states that manufactured housing for which no certificate of title has been issued is considered real property when it has been permanently affixed to real property that is owned by the owner of the manufactured housing; specifies that a certificate of title or salvage is not required if the real property is owned by the owner of the manufactured housing; and specifies that the real property must be owned by the owner of the manufactured housing.
L.D. 1046, “An Act To Provide Immunity for Prescribing and Dispensing Intranasal Naloxone Kits”: provides immunity for health care professionals and other persons who assist a person who is experiencing or likely to experience an opiate-related drug overdose with intranasal naloxone.
L.D. 1081, “An Act To Establish Legislative Standing in Judicial Proceedings”: provides that a group of 25 or more legislators acting in good faith have standing to intervene in any court proceeding to defend a law enacted by the Legislature if the constitutionality, legality or application of the law is at issue.
L.D. 1119, “An Act To Establish Superior Court as the Forum in Which Appeals of Agency Decisions Must Be Taken”: makes appeals of decisions of the Workers' Compensation Board, the Public Utilities Commission, Board of Environmental Protection or the commissioner of Enviornmental Protection on applications for expedited wind energy development, general permits for tidal energy demonstration projects and general permits for offshore wind energy demonstration projects are subject to the Superior Court.
L.D. 1200, “An Act To Impose a Duty To Warn and Protect on Mental Health Professionals”: imposes on physicians, psychologists, alcohol and drug counselors, social workers and counseling professionals a duty to warn and protect if a patient or client is likely to engage in physical violence that poses a serious risk of harm to self or others, or a threat of substantial property damage.
L.D. 1204, “An Act To Clarify the Appeal Process of Code Enforcement Officers and Boards of Appeal”: allows the board of appeals for a municipality to review a decision of a code enforcement officer for that municipality unless the charter or an ordinance of the municipality expressly provides that the decision of the code enforcement officer or board of appeals is only advisory.
L.D. 1331, “An Act To Amend the Law Pertaining to Defective or Unreasonably Dangerous Goods”: requires a user or consumer who has been injured by defective or unreasonably dangerous goods or products to bring a civil action within six years after the date that both that injury and its cause are known.
Taxation Committee; public hearings; room 127; State House
L.D. 988, “An Act To Amend the Tax Laws”: clarifies laws governing taxation; deletes an obsolete reference and changes to the minimum tax credit; amends the casual sales tax, filing requirement for estate tax and military survivor benefit payment modification; adds to the computing amount of tax imposed on gross direct premiums; and repeals the provision provision regarding the income subtraction modification for non-Maine active duty military pay and the definition of a term relevant to the new markets capital investment credit.
L.D. 989, “An Act To Conform the Maine Tax Laws for 2012 to the United States Internal Revenue Code”: emergency bill, updates references to the United States Internal Revenue Code so that they refer to the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 as amended.
L.D. 1228, “An Act To Establish Municipal Cost Components for Unorganized Territory Services To Be Rendered in Fiscal Year 2013-14”: emergency bill, establishes municipal cost components for state and county services provided to the unorganized territory that would be paid for by a municipality.
L.D. 1414, “Resolve, Authorizing the State Tax Assessor To Convey the Interest of the State in Certain Real Estate in the Unorganized Territory”: authorizes the State Tax Assessor to convey the interest of the State in several parcels of real estate in the Unorganized Territory.
Transportation Committee; public hearings; room 126; State House
L.D. 362, “An Act To Prohibit Use of Public Funds for a Private Transportation Study”: prohibits the use of Department of Transportation funds to pay for a traffic and revenue study or finance plan in connection with a proposal for a transportation facility made by a private entity.
L.D. 870, “Resolve, Regarding a Study by the Department of Transportation of the Most Efficient Options for Improving East-west Transit and Transportation”: directs the Department of Transportation to study the existing highways and railroad assets that now serve as an east-west transport corridor to determine the most efficient options for improving east-west transit and transportation.
L.D. 985, “Resolve, To Repeal the Requirement That the Department of Transportation Facilitate a Feasibility Study of an East-west Highway and Provide for Public Access to Certain Documents”: repeals the reslove to study an east-west highway and specifies that any documents created in connection with that resolve are public documents.
L.D. 1209, “An Act To Prohibit the Use of Public Resources for a Privately Owned East-west Highway”: prohibits the use of state funds or state-owned property for the construction or development of a privately owned east-west highway.
L.D. 1269, “An Act To Require an Independent Analysis of the Impact of and a Review Process for an East-west Highway prior to Development”: requires a comprehensive independent analysis to be conducted prior to the development of a proposed private or public-private partnership project for a highway or utility corridor that traverses the State in an east-west manner.
L.D. 1304, “Resolve, Establishing the East-west Highway Study Commission To Oversee Further Study or Planning for an East-west Highway”: establishes the East-west Highway Study Commission to oversee further study of an east-west highway.
Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee; work sessions; room 437; State House
L.D. 239, “An Act To Improve the Return to the State on the Sale of Spirits and To Provide a Source of Payment for Maine's Hospitals”: emergency governor's bill repealing the privatization of the state's wholesale liquor business, instead allowing the commissioner of administrative and financial services to enter an agreement for wholesale liquor activities. It authorizes the state treasurer to issue liquor operation revenue bonds $187 million and establishes the Health Care Liability Retirement Fund and the Liquor Operation Revenue Fund.
L.D. 644, “An Act To Strengthen the State's Wholesale Liquor Business”: emergency bill, requires the state to continue privatization of its wholesale liquor operations beyond its current contract, outline the details for bidders, allows the commissioner of administrative and financial services to extend the current wholesale contract if the commissioner determines a new one cannot be bid or ratified before the current contract's expiration for $34 million.
Health and Human Services Committee; work sessions; room 209; Cross Building
L.D. 536, “An Act To Improve the Efficiency of Use of MaineCare Funds”: ensures that a person who has applied for MaineCare coverage is discharged from the hospital to a rehabilitation facility promptly as appropriate to that person's medical condition.
L.D. 537, “An Act To Help Maine Residents Receive Private Health Care Insurance”: provides that individuals must apply for enrollment in an employer's group health plan for eligible for MaineCare.
L.D. 716, “An Act Regarding Prescription Medications for Children under the MaineCare Program”: directs the Department of Health and Human Services to adopt a program that consists of a prescription medication protocol, monitoring and prior authorization for reimbursement under the MaineCare program for prescriptions given to children.
L.D. 804, “An Act To Improve Preventive Dental Health Care and Reduce Costs in the MaineCare Program”: adds one annual preventive oral health visit to the MaineCare-covered oral health services for adults 21 years of age and older.
L.D. 1089, “Resolve, To Allow York County To Renegotiate with the Department of Health and Human Services a Decision Regarding Transportation Services”: requires the Commissioner of Health and Human Services to reopen the decision to designate a broker for MaineCare nonemergency transportation services in York County.
L.D. 1188, “Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Amend Its Rules of Reimbursement under the MaineCare Program for Audiology and Speech-language Pathology Services”: equalizes rates, eliminate a prior authorization requirement and provides for payment by the MaineCare program of the Medicare deductible for audiology services.
L.D. 1247, “An Act To Expand Coverage of Family Planning Services”: expands Medicaid coverage for family planning services to adults and adolescents who have incomes less than or equal to 200 percent of the nonfarm income official poverty line.
L.D. 1274, “An Act To Sustain Emergency Medical Services throughout the State”: increases MaineCare reimbursement rates for ambulance services to Medicare reimbursement rate levels.
L.D. 1333, “Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Amend the MaineCare Benefits Manual”: pays a distinct psychiatric unit discharge rate equal to $9,128.31 per psychiatric discharge for patients under 18 years of age from hospitals in the Lewiston-Auburn area.
L.D. 1364, “An Act To Amend the Laws Governing Hospital Leave Days for MaineCare Recipients”: emergency bill, clarifies that the number of hospital and therapeutic leave days for MaineCare recipients is limited to four hospital leave days per hospital visit and one therapeutic leave day per year.
© 2014 The Morning Sentinel - All Rights Reserved.
31 Front Street, Waterville, Maine 04901