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Relating to the provision of certain co-navigation services to persons who are deaf-blind.
Estimated Two-year Net Impact to General Revenue Related Funds for HB 3287, Committee Report 2nd House, Substituted: a negative impact of ($1,401,153) through the biennium ending August 31, 2023.
The Health and Human Services Commission is required to implement this Act only if the legislature
appropriates money specifically for that purpose. If the legislature does not appropriate money specifically
for that purpose, the commission may, but is not required to, implement the Act using other appropriations
available for the purpose.
HB 3287 would require the Health and Human Services Commission to operate a statewide co-navigation services program through which deaf-blind services that assist a person to access their environment and make informed decisions via co-navigators who would be reimbursed for their services by the commission. The executive commissioner would establish reimbursement rates for co-navigators.
These rates would have to be tiered and based on the co-navigator's level of training in communication modes; fluency and skill in communication modes and sighted guide-mobility for persons who are deaf-blind. The commission would be required to ensure that quality co-navigation services are provided by: monitoring compliance; developing funding sources for the program that are in addition to state sources and will reduce reliance on the state sources; and providing funding and technical assistance.
HB 3287 would allow the executive commissioner to establish an advisory committee for this program. The executive commissioner would be required to operate the program in a manner that is efficient; and ensures that co-navigators in the program have adequate training.
HB 3287 would require the Health and Human Services Commission to implement a provision of this Act only if the legislature appropriates money specifically for that purpose. If this money does not appropriate money, the commission is able to, but not required, implement provisions of this Act using other appropriations.
HB 3287 expands the role of the government to subsidize a program that would be more appropriately and more efficiently conducted and financed by nonprofit charitable organizations. For these reasons Texas Action opposes HB 3287.