ROOTS Roundup

by Emily Harris

WELCOME to the Spring edition of ROOTS Roundup, a quarterly newsletter containing information about what's happening at ANFP Headquarters, updates from your Government Affairs Committee, and valuable information you can share with your state chapter and leaders. If there are any topics you would like us to cover in a future issue, please email Mindy Theesfeld.

On March 18, the White House issued its HEA priorities with flexible Pell Grants and “market- driven workforce development programs.” The White House also announced its Workforce Advisory Board which includes Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, and Barbara Thomsen is pursuing a meeting with her staff.

On March 14, Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Tim Kaine (D-VA) introduced the Jumpstart Our Businesses by Supporting Students (JOBS) Act, which could be added to any HEA bill and would help students by expanding Pell Grant eligibility for training and credentialing programs.

On Dec. 28, 2018, the IRS published a proposed rule to interpret and implement changes made to the formula by which businesses can take interest deductions in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The American Health Care Association submitted comments on the various ownership/leasing arrangements for SNFs (direct ownership, REITs, third-party financing, etc.) and how the IRS regulations might affect them one way or the other.

On Dec. 14, 2018, the Dept. of Education held a Career & Technical Education (CTE) summit for input on the “Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act” that was enacted in July 2018, and OAJCC President Tamar Jacoby represented ANFP at the meeting.

ANFP is a member of the Opportunity America Jobs and Careers Coalition (OAJCC), consisting of companies and associations working to amplify the employer voice on career education and put workforce education more on a par with traditional academic instruction.

OAJCC is following reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) with the goal of redirecting funds towards CTE programs. In February, Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) stated his desire to get an HEA bill through the Senate this summer with more flexible funding for CTE.

On the regulatory front, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is in the early stages of preparing a rule “Prevention of Workplace Violence in Healthcare and Social Assistance” that will cover LTC facilities. On Feb. 27, the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections held a hearing on H.R. 1309, which would short-circuit OSHA’s rulemaking process and require the agency to issue an interim-final rule within a year.

ANFP-PAC flyers continue to be distributed to chapter presidents promoting the new ROOTS campaign along with the PAC Donation Policy and donation form, encouraging volunteers to solicit PAC fundraising at their spring state meetings. ANFP-PAC now has $6,129 cash-on-hand!