Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Voices Heard

A number of caregivers, Kupuna advocates, care home operators and their patients rallied yesterday at the State Capitol in support of SB2830, widely known as The Caregiver Bill. Joined by Reps. John Mizuno, Rida Cabanilla, Joey Manahan and other lawmakers, the troop of over thirty supporters ardently chanted toward the rooftop of the State Capitol, urging Gov. Linda Lingle to sign their bill. The measure was one of 52 bills on the Governor's intent-to-veto list.


Those words reverberated through the Capitol as the group waved their signs condemning a veto of a bill that would effectuate the recommendations of the Joint Legislative Committee on Family Caregiving, including:

(1) Extends the sunset date of the Joint Legislative Committee on Family Caregiving;

(2) Changes the name of the committee to the Joint Legislative Committee on Aging in Place (Committee);

(3) Expands the Committee mandate to include aging in place issues related to family caregiving;
(4) Requires the Aging and Disability Resource Center to report to the Committee;

(5) Requires the Committee to conduct a cash and counseling project;

(6) Appropriates funds to the Committee;

(7) Allows the Kupuna Care Program to include overnight, weekend, and emergency respite services and provide grants to caregivers for home modification;

(8) Appropriates funds for a respite care study;

(9) Appropriates funds to the Kupuna Care Program; and

(10) Establish a task force to focus on the needs and issues of grandparents raising grandchildren.
It appears that their voices were heard.

The Governor signed the bill into law yesterday with a line item veto that eliminates the $500,000 appropriation to the Kupuna Care Program (number 9 above).

You can read the Governor's veto message here.

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