Legislative Update – Week of May 14, 2023

Very little happened last week at the capitol other than negotiations on education, meaning most of the about 450 remaining bills are still waiting on final action. Neither the House nor Senate had long agendas all week as they either accepted amendments to bills from opposite houses or rejected them sending them to conference. Because more than 2,500 bills went dormant after not being heard before deadlines, some authors also are searching for vehicles for their policies meaning we could see some policy bills in budget committees or changes to bills in conference. The fact that the House has scheduled budget committee meetings through next Saturday could indicate that they hope they are near a budget agreement. However, the Senate will need to schedule meetings as well. We will see what happens in the next week as they attempt to finish their work before Sine Die, May 26. Here is an update on a few issues:
  • Health Information Exchange – budget subcommittee chairs and full committee chairs have been discussing how to possibly fund the implementation fee for providers while in the House there also is an effort to disapprove the rules from the Oklahoma Health Care Authority. It is unclear whether that would delay implementation altogether or just remove exemptions outlined for providers. HB1688 would have delayed implementation but it remains dormant after it was laid over on the floor to block an attempt to make the HIE voluntary for all providers.
  • HB1657 – The House accepted Senate amendments to the measure that would require the OHCA to streamline the process for Medicaid provider enrollment and credentialling for fee-for-service. It should be sent to the governor soon.
We will be hoping for a budget agreement soon so that we may be able to avoid a special session this summer!

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