2012 Kansas Legislature Approaching First Adjournment

I mentioned in a previous post that the Kansas House Passed 2012 #SB304, Batterer Intervention Program Certification, on Wednesday by 123-1, resulting in a Conference Committee appointment to work out the House and Senate differences.  http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/measures/sb304/

What I didn’t realize was that the House Committee made a significant change in the bill – incorporating 2012 #HB2740, Domestic Relations Case Manager Qualifications, which hadn’t been set for hearings in committee. http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/measures/hb2740/

The resulting bill is here: http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/measures/documents/sb304_02_0000.pdf

The inserted provisions put limitations on the qualifications for people who can serve as Domestic Relations Case Managers taking any action on or after September 1, 2012. Case Managers would have the following qualifications requirements under the bill:

“(d) To qualify as an appointed case manager, an individual shall:

“(1) (A) Be currently licensed in Kansas as a licensed psychologist,  licensed masters level psychologist, licensed clinical psychotherapist, 4 licensed professional counselor, licensed clinical professional counselor,  licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed clinical marriage and  family therapist, licensed master social worker or licensed specialist 7 social worker; or  (B) be currently licensed to practice law in Kansas and have at least  five years of experience in the field of domestic relations law or family law;
“(2) be qualified to conduct mediation;
“(3) mediated at least five domestic relations cases;
“(4) attend one or more workshops, approved and as ordered by the district court in which the case is filed, on case management; and
“(5) complete a minimum number of continuing education hours regarding case management issues as established and approved by the supreme court.”

One thing that makes it all especially strange is that there is no requirement in this bill that the case manager have training in abuse and control dynamics, which seems it would be the Key in this bill to make this amendment germane. I think without that tie-in, tacking on the case manager amendments is likely unconstitutional.

Second, I did not put into my previous post a very important bill passed by the Kansas House: Autism Insurance. That is, requiring that Insurance Companies offering medical insurance in Kansas must cover treatments  for Autism. http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/measures/documents/hb2764_02_0000.pdf

The debate over Autism Insurance was long (over 5 hours, with approximately 10 amendments proposed on the House Floor). It finally passed the Committee of the Whole by 92-30, after an initial attempt to send the bill back to committee (which was defeated 41-80).

On roll call, the vote was: Yeas 92; Nays 30; Present but not voting: 0; Absent or not voting: 3.

Those voting in favor of the Autism Insurance bill: Alford, Ballard, Bethell, Boman, Bowers, Brookens, Brown, Bruchman, Burgess, Burroughs, Carlin, Colloton, Davis, DeGraaf, Denning, Dillmore, Fawcett, Feuerborn, Finney, Flaharty, Frownfelter, D. Gatewood, S. Gatewood, Goico, Gonzalez, Goodman, Gordon, Grange, Grant, Gregory, Grosserode, Hedke, Henderson, Henry, Hermanson, Hildabrand, Hill, Hoffman, C. Holmes, M. Holmes, Howell, Huebert, Kerschen, Kiegerl, Kinzer, Kleeb, Knox, Kuether, Landwehr, Lane, LeDoux, Loganbill, Mah, McCray-Miller, Meier, Montgomery, Moxley, O’Brien, O’Hara, Osterman, Otto, Pauls, Phelps, Phillips, Pottorff, Prescott, Proehl, Rubin, Ruiz, Ryckman, Scapa, Schroeder, Seiwert, Shultz, Siegfreid, Slattery, Sloan, Smith, Spalding, Swanson, Tietze, Trimmer, Vickrey, Victors, Ward, Wetta, Williams, Winn, B. Wolf, K. Wolf, Wolfe Moore, Worley.

Those voting against the Autism Insurance bill: Arpke, Aurand, Billinger, Brunk, Calloway, Carlson, Collins, Crum, Donohoe, Garber, Hayzlett, Hineman, Johnson, Kelley, Kelly, Mast, McLeland, Meigs, Mesa, O’Neal, Patton, Peck, Powell, Rhoades, Roth, Schwab, Schwartz, Suellentrop, Tyson, Weber.

Present but not voting: None. Absent or not voting: Bollier, Cassidy, Peterson. The bill passed, as amended.

This next week is the last week before First Adjournment, which means that Conference Committees will be in full, hectic work-mode. If you are interested in putting in comments to any legislation, be certain you do so with those you know in the House or Senate as soon as possible this coming week. Otherwise, there won’t be much chance to do so.