February 2, 2017 – Legislative Highlights

2017 Virginia General Assembly
Legislative Highlights
February 2, 2017

The mission of the disAbility Law Center of Virginia is to advance independence, choice and self-determination; protect legal, human and civil rights; and eliminate abuse, neglect and discrimination.

As crossover approaches next week, many bills addressing mental health issues remain alive, while others have seen defeat.  Here are some that we are watching:

STILL ACTIVE

HB 1483 (Bell, Richard)—defines a qualified mental health professional.  Approved by Committee on Health Welfare and Institutions and read twice in the House.

HB 1782 (Bell, Rob) gives the State Board of Corrections the authority to investigate deaths in jails.  Approved by House Courts of Justice, but tabled by a subcommittee of House Committee on Appropriations.

HB 1783 (Bell, Rob) requires a uniform standard for mental health screening on admission to jail. Approved by House Courts of Justice, but tabled by a subcommittee of the House Committee on Appropriations.

HB 1784 (Bell, Rob) requires a comprehensive plan establishing discharge planning duties for jails Approved by a subcommittee for House Courts of Justice but not yet heard by full committee.

HB 1910 (Yost) establishes a “duty to warn” for physicians assistants.  Approved by a subcommittee for House Courts of Justice but not yet heard by full committee. HB 1996 (Hope) requires a person to be transferred from jail within 10 days of being found in need of treatment.  Approved by a subcommittee for House Courts of Justice but not yet heard by full committee.

HB 2184 (Yost) creates a process for evaluation of inmates for mental health issues.  Approved by a subcommittee for House Courts of Justice but not yet heard by full committee.

HB 2462 (Bell, Rob) allows an inmate to be transferred for inpatient mental health treatment even if already receiving treatment on an outpatient basis, in jail.  Approved by a subcommittee for House Courts of Justice but not yet heard by full committee.

SB 933 (Favola) – requires mental health training for jail personnel.    Approved by the Senate Committee on Finance and incorporated into SB 940.

SB 940 (Cosgrove)  — requires mental health screening in jails. Approved by the Senate.

SB 1222 (Barker) creates a registry of psychiatric patients who may be in need of hospitalization.    Approved by Senate Education and Health but referred to Finance. See also HB 1918 ,below

SB 1233 (Chafin) creates additional persons who can conduct mental admission evaluations.   The bill was heard in subcommittee, with no decision.  Approved Education and Health but referred to Finance

SB 1442 (Deeds)  Requires a uniform mental health assessment tool for jail personnel.  Approved by Senate Courts of Justice but sent to Finance for review.

PROBABLY NOT GOING FORWARD

HB 1480 (Helsel) requires mental health training for first responders.  Tabled in subcommittee.

HB 1918 (Robinson) adds to the emergency bed registry de-indentified information about individuals who have been in need of involuntary admission.  Tabled in subcommittee.

HB 1975 (Yost) states that a person being held on a temporary detention order must be held for a minimum of 23 hours before commitment hearing.  Tabled in subcommittee.

HB 1997 (Hope) authorizes local law enforcement to take a person to a local crisis stabilization unit instead of jail where appropriate.  Tabled in subcommittee.

HB 2330 (Herretick) allows an inmate to be transferred for inpatient mental health treatment even if already receiving treatment on an outpatient basis, in jail.  Tabled in subcommittee, but see HB 2462, dealing with the same issue.