Every Minnesota chiropractor is impacted by decisions made at the state capitol.
Your involvement is essential, but proactive legislative activity is time consuming and costly. The MCA combines the support of doctors across the state and experts in the area of state government to advocate for changes in public policy that promote
Advocacy is a core function of the MCA, and our staff and lobbyists have been in the trenches promoting and protecting chiropractic inclusion in health care programs like HMO’s, Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare. Without the MCA, chiropractic care may have been virtually eliminated from workers’ compensation and personal injury in the past.
The MCA legislative team can not do it alone; they need your help and your voice. Without a strong grass roots effort we cannot outmaneuver or outspend those who oppose us at the capitol. However, with your support, anything is possible!
Healthcare will continue to be a prominent focus in the Minnesota Legislature. Convincing lawmakers that access to chiropractic doctors is imperative is a top priority of the MCA. With a showing of 100% support you will put power behind
our legislative motion.
Why Get Involved Today?
- Simply put, it’s your profession and your right to practice is at stake, get involved and PROTECT IT
- Every year we look for opportunities to introduce legislation and monitor other bills we oppose
- In November 2020, all 201 seats in the Minnesota Legislature will be on the ballot – you have the ability to influence who sits in those seats!
- With active participation and financial donations the MCA and its members can be a part of every House and Senate campaign
- Supporting today will assist in getting support for our profession in the future
Legislative contact information
- House Members: https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/members/list
- Senate Members: https://www.senate.mn/members/index.html
2021 Key Bills
This session, there are two bills of major interest that provide the opportunity for doctors to contact their lawmakers asking for support.
- HF 477 – Reintroduced by Rep. Erin Koegel – will modify and expand coverage for chiropractic services in the medical assistance and MinnesotaCare public insurance programs
- HF 319 – Introduced by Rep. Jordan Rasmusson – new bill which includes the use of telemedicine services by chiropractic doctors and reorganizes the animal chiropractic sections in our practice act
2021 Legislative Priorities
The MCA believes that patients should have access to clinical services and providers that best meet their needs and the MCA will actively pursue legislative, administrative, and other initiatives that promote the following policies:
- Health Care Provider Tax. Due to the disproportionate impact that the Health Care Provider Tax places on small, independent health care providers, such as chiropractic practices, and patients of those providers, alternatives that will relieve this burden must be sought and any efforts to increase the Health Care Provider Tax in the future must be opposed.
- No Fault Automobile Insurance. Minnesota’s current no fault automobile insurance system must protect the patient’s ability to choose the provider of his or her choice and to receive the necessary health care for injuries resulting from accidents covered by no fault automobile insurance while fraud, waste, and abuse in the current system must be eliminated in collaboration with all impacted stakeholders.
- Patient Access. Patients must be allowed access to comprehensive chiropractic services in public plans, and other health care products, by allowing Doctors of Chiropractic to practice at the top of their licenses, providing patients access to services delivered through modern technology, providing patient access to effective and lower cost non-pharmacologic chiropractic therapies, and by ensuring that payments and reimbursement policies for chiropractic services are the same as those similar and same services provided by other health care providers.
- Professional Integrity. Professional responsibility, integrity, and high standards of competence and skill are the guiding principles for Doctors of Chiropractic with their ultimate goal being treatment that results in the greatest good for the patient. The MCA supports professional standards that honor the history and tradition of chiropractic while protecting the public through clear professional standards and effective enforcement of those standards.
- Other Chiropractic Issues. From time-to-time federal and state legislation is introduced that may impact the Chiropractic profession in Minnesota. The MCA will actively monitor and work on these issues, and through the American Chiropractic Association on the federal level, to promote Chiropractic in Minnesota and access to all Minnesotans.
In order to protect and advance the chiropractic profession in Minnesota, we must develop and maintain a strong grass roots organization through a volunteer KEY DOCTOR PROGRAM.
Week of May 17, 2021
Regular Session Adjournment
The 2021 Regular Legislative Session has come to an end. The legislature is constitutionally mandated to adjourn today, May 17th. The House adjourned shortly after 2pm and the Senate a few hours later. This legislative session has been unconventional in so many ways, and this early afternoon adjournment is just one more of those irregularities. There is still a very large amount of work to be done as no budget items were passed. Late Sunday night, Governor Walz, Speaker Hortman, and Majority Leader Gazelka agreed to global budget targets (attached) giving committees the direction they need to finish their work. Although this came too late to pass a budget before the regular session ended, the legislature was able to pass some non-controversial, non-budgetary items before adjourning. In preparation for an anticipated June 14th special session, the conference committees will now evolve into working groups to hammer out the remaining details of their budget bills. These budget bills are due to leadership by June 4th and must be agreed upon before a special session will be called.
The Health and Human Services Omnibus bill (HF2128) was pared down considerably from a 1000 page bill to a 500 page bill. Included in this bill was HF669/SF753 which will require health plans to credential providers who submit a clean application in a timely manner. There was no movement on the tax bill, so exclusions of PPP loan forgiveness will have to wait until special session.
We anticipate receiving further details on the budget bills and the work of the working groups/conference committees in the coming days and weeks and will provide you with those details as they are made public.
Week of May 10, 2021
With one more week before the 2021 Legislative Session adjourns, the Minnesota House and Senate have been busy with conference committees. Despite meeting almost daily, very little of substance has actually occurred as the conference committees are waiting for joint budget targets to be negotiated by the House, Senate, and Governor before taking any action on their bills. Additionally, the legislature has long been waiting for news from the federal government on how the $2.83 billion of state aid provided by the American Rescue Plan Act can be spent. This guidance is expected to be announced tomorrow. This guidance will be helpful in negotiating joint budget targets, but there is still considerable work to be done in a very short amount of time, making an on time finish seem less and less likely.
Last week, the Governor released an executive order sunsetting the COVID-19 public health restrictions that had been implemented on March 13th, 2020. The details outlining this sunset, in the announcement, mentions how due to the recent trends of increased vaccinations across Minnesota, and having supply and accessibility for those 16 and over to get vaccinated, we will be able to transition “back to a more normal summer”. The amendments addressed increasing the number of people in indoor gatherings, removing the curfew for specific establishments, and removing the maximum capacity for outdoor gatherings. For more specific changes, please see the attachment. This announcement will play a part in end of session negotiations as this was a priority request for Senate Republicans.
Week of April 26, 2021
This week both the House and Senate were busy with floor sessions as we are now in the last couple of weeks before the session adjourns on May 17th. The bodies are on track with their sessions, to avoid any government shutdown if a budget is not set by July 1st. The Health and Human Services (HHS) bill was heard and passed off the House floor on Monday and in the Senate on Thursday.
Below are the conferees for the Conference Committee on HF 2128, the Health and Human Services Omnibus Bill:
- Rep. Tina Liebling
- Rep. Jen Schultz
- Rep. Aisha Gomez
- Rep. Dave Pinto
- Rep. Joe Schomacker
- Sen. Michelle Benson
- Sen. Jim Abeler
- Sen. Paul Utke
- Sen. Mark Koran
- Sen. John Hoffman
Starting next week, most of the activity will shift to conference committee as the House and Senate work to negotiate the major differences in their spending bills. The schedule has been determined in both bodies and attached is a document of that timeline for both the House and the Senate. Additionally, the hearings in these committees will be limited to three hours each day, allowing for the gavel to be passed between the House and the Senate, using the attached schedule. Please note that these schedules are subject to change.
Additionally, with the release of the 2020 U.S. Census, 7 states are set to lose congressional seats. Minnesota, however, will be keeping all 8 House seats. Minnesota’s population has increased almost 8 percent in the last decade as noted by the SC Times, as well as is the state with the highest voter turnout and highest census response rate. Maintaining these congressional seats is definitely a win, as it continues our State’s representation in congress. Had we lost a seat, the remaining 7 districts would have had to increase by over 100,000 people, to offset the state’s redistricting.
Week of April 19, 2021
It was a full week of House and Senate floor sessions and committee hearings as we are currently in the last month of the 2021 legislative session. The session is set to constitutionally adjourn May 17th, but the budget needs to be set by July 1st to avoid any government shutdown. Due to the peace time emergency, the legislature reconvenes every month to renew the governor’s powers, so there is less pressure on the deadlines as they will most likely be coming together for a special session. The House and Senate will need all the time they can get as they are still miles apart on their budget bills and we are still awaiting guidance on how to spend the large amounts of money coming down from the federal government.
The Health and Human Services (HHS) bill was heard on Wednesday in the Senate Finance Committee. The House Ways & Means Committee heard the HHS bills last week, and they can be expected on both the House and Senate floor early next week. There is movement in both the House and the Senate on telehealth, noting that the Department of Human Services (DHS) has expressed equity concerns about the medical assistance (MA) population being pushed to telehealth. Several other omnibus bills have passed in both bodies within the last week including, but not limited to commerce and energy, jobs and labor, housing, agriculture, and higher education.
Week of April 12, 2021
It was another full week of legislative hearings as lawmakers transition from their consistent schedule of weekly meetings to a much less predictable period as bills make their way to the floor of the House and the Senate before heading to conference committee. This week much time was spent in the two finance committees in each body hearing several of the large omnibus finance bills. Next week omnibus bills will begin to make their way to the House and Senate Floor for passage and then onto conference committees where differences between House and Senate bill versions will be negotiated. The one remaining deadline set in stone is the Legislature’s May 17 adjournment date, and there is a lot of distance that needs to be bridged between the omnibus finance bills between now and then.
On Thursday, the House Ways & Means Committee combined the Health, Human Services, and portions of the Early Childhood finance bills into one omnibus finance bill. This bill was then passed and sent to the floor where it may be heard late next week or over the weekend. We have not heard what the plan is in the Senate, but we would expect the Health and Human Services omnibus bill to be heard in the Senate Finance Committee early in the coming week.
Week of April 5, 2021
Legislative hearings resumed at a very fast pace this past Tuesday morning following the week long legislative spring break. Most legislative committees released their omnibus bills early this past week, and then held multiple hearings over the course of the remainder of the week to walk through, receive testimony on and make changes to those omnibus bills. Next week the House and Senate finance committees will hold hearings on most if not all of these omnibus bills. The bills will then be sent to the House and Senate floors for passage, and we will then enter into the conference committee stage of session where negotiations will begin over the differences between these House and Senate bills.
Attached you will find highlights of interest as well as a component index document for each of the four Health and Human Services omnibus bills, based on the introduced version of the bills. There will be many changes made to these omnibus bills in the coming weeks as provisions are added and removed and we will be sharing updated versions and overviews with you in the coming weeks.
- Senate Human Services Reform Omnibus Budget Bill Component Index
- Senate Health and Human Services Omnibus Budget Bill Component Index, Senate Health and Human Services Omnibus Budget Bill Summary
- House Human Services Omnibus Finance Bill Component Index
- House Health Omnibus Finance Bill Component Index
Week of March 22, 2021
As the legislature prepares for a week long break, we are gaining a bit of clarity as to how the end of the legislative session may play out. The House DLF released their budget targets this week (attached) with additional investments especially in the area of education and COVID-19 relief. These new investments are partially financed with increased taxes on the top earners in the state. This is in contrast to the Senate Republicans’ hard line in the sand with no new taxes.
We have heard chatter that the plan is for budget bills to start coming out next week during the break with the larger budget areas coming out later in the week. After the legislature returns on April 6th, the apparent plan is to have the budget bills heard in their committees of jurisdiction that week. These bills would then be heard in the House Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committees the following week. Much of the action would then turn to floor action and conference committees. This is all subject to change, but at least gives us an idea of what to expect for an end-of-session timeline.
On Friday Governor Walz announced that starting Tuesday, March 30th COVID-19 vaccine eligibility would be expanded to all Minnesotans over the age of 16 years old.
Lastly, Governor Walz’s State of State Address is scheduled for Sunday, March 28th at 6:00pm. You can view a live stream of the event on the Governor’s YouTube page, here.