On Tuesday, the HHS Committee voted 7-0 to advance LB 95, a bill to require accreditation of lead contractors, with an amendment calling for a moratorium on returning to privatization in the central, northern and western service areas of the state until June 2012. Essentially, this would prevent the state from contracting with a new agency to replace Boys & Girls Home, the previous contractor for the rural part of the state, which terminated its contract in October 2010 due to financial problems. The proposed moratorium is consistent with calls from Appleseed and our allies that the state slow down the privatization until the system is stabilized and that an independent evaluation can be conducted. Yesterday, the HHS Committee designated LB 95 as a priority bill. As a result, Appleseed is hopeful this bill will advance to debate by the full Legislature.
Click here to read a Lincoln Journal Star article on the proposed moratorium on privatization.
Next Wednesday (March 16th), the HHS Committee will hold a public hearing on LB 433, a bill to provide basic oversight of the child welfare privatization, including financial, reporting, and monitoring requirement and specification of certain services that cannot be privatized. Nebraska’s child welfare privatization is distinct from privatization efforts in other states in that the Nebraska reform was pursued without direction or input from the Legislature. We believe this bill would bring about much needed oversight and transparency to the system and would benefit children who are being impacted by unrest in the system. This bill is a priority for Appleseed.
Click here to find and contact your state senator.