SB 204

84(R) - 2015
Senate Health & Human Services
Senate Health & Human Services
Health & Human Services
Licensing & Administrative Procedures

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Positive
  • Neutral


Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa

Bill Caption

Relating to the functions and operations of the Department of Aging and Disability Services; increasing penalties.

Fiscal Notes

Estimated Two-year Net Impact to General Revenue Related Funds for SB 204, Committee Report 1st House, Substituted: a negative impact of ($20,074,128) through the biennium ending August 31, 2017.

Estimates of the closure of the Austin SSLC and DADS' role in the Restructuring Commission were developed by LBB staff. It is estimated that closing the Austin SSLC would result in a net cost of $5,122,032 in All Funds, including $1,915,460 in General Revenue, in FY 2016, a net savings of $6,765,410 in All Funds, including $3,947,745 in General Revenue, in FY 2017, for a total net positive impact of $1,643,378 in All Funds for the 2016-17 biennium.

No significant fiscal implication to units of local government is anticipated.

Bill Analysis

This Sunset legislation would amend chapters of the Human Resources Code and the Health and Safety Code. The bill would require the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) to establish progressive sanction regimes for residential long-term care facilities. The bill would require the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DADS) to create crisis intervention teams that would provide services and support to persons with an intellectual or developmental disability (IDD). The bill would establish the State Supported Living Center (SSLC) Restructuring Commission in order to determine which SSLCs should be closed. The Austin SSLC would be required to close by August 31, 2017.

For a more extensive analysis on the necessity of restructuring of SSLCs, click here and here.

Vote Recommendation Notes

5/21/2015 update:

Several changes have been made to this bill in House committee, but we still support SB 204. The second chamber sponsors are Reps. Richard Raymond and Larry Gonzales.

First chamber recommendation: 

The current state of care provided by the state to people in the SSLC system is in shambles. People are often mistreated and abused, the buildings in many cases are old and very expensive to maintain, and the statutory oversight mechanisms available to the state are inadequate to address these problems. At this juncture, a complete overhaul of the system is necessary.

The closure of Austin SSLC and potential consolidation or closures of other SSLCs promotes government efficiency. Projections estimate that the cost of care for each person in an SSLC will soon reach $17,000 per person per month, whereas it costs the state an average of $5,000 per person per month for each person receiving care through a privately operated Intermediate Care Facility (ICF). The fiscal note indicates the implementation of the Austin SSLC closure provision would result in cost-savings. There are additional cost-savings associated with other possible SSLC closures that are not reflected in the fiscal note.

While the creation of progressive sanctions may raise some concerns at first glance, we believe these sanctions represent a legitimate backstop to prevent state-contracted residential long-term care facilities from failing to live up to their obligations to treat the people in their care well and to ensure that the facilities provide the services they are paid by the state to provide.

We support SB 204 primarily on the basis that it promotes government efficiency and reform. 

Organizations Supporting

Texas Public Policy Foundation