HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2019
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO THE KUPUNA CAREGIVERS PROGRAM.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that in 2017, 17.8 per cent of Hawaii's population was sixty-five years or older, and with projections of an increase to 19.4 per cent by 2020 and 23 per cent by 2030, caring for Hawaii's kupuna is a high priority of the legislature.
The legislature finds that currently there are 154,000 unpaid family caregivers in Hawaii who are taking care of their parents, spouse, or other relatives who need extra care. Family caregivers play a crucial role in the State's health care system by providing long-term care to the elderly, all unpaid. However, it is imperative to ensure that the caregivers take care of themselves and have the necessary support and services to sustain their own health as well as the health of the family member for whom they are caring.
To address this issue, the kupuna caregivers program was established on July 6, 2017, and aims to provide working caregivers with additional resources to cover a variety of support services for qualified kupuna, such as adult day care, assisted transportation, homemaker services, and many other important services. The program ensures that caregivers continue earning their own retirement benefits, which helps businesses retain experienced workers and provides peace of mind that loved kupuna are well cared for while caregivers remain in the workforce. This program allows caregivers who are juggling their own employment with their caregiving responsibilities to simultaneously take care of their kupuna and themselves.
Since the establishment of the kupuna caregivers program, the executive office on aging has reportedly received hundreds of calls from Hawaii residents wishing to receive the benefits of the program. While the creation of the program was an important first step, the legislature believes that the program requires additional third and fourth year funding to have the impact it needs. With the high volume of residents showing interest in the program, the current funding amount needs to be increased in order to better serve the people of Hawaii.
The purpose of this Act is to:
(1) Amend the kupuna caregivers program allocation cap; and
(2) Appropriate funds for the continued implementation of the kupuna caregivers program.
Section 349-18, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending
subsection (c) to read as follows:
The kupuna caregivers program shall award an allocation of funds,
subject to the availability of funding and up to a maximum of [
$70 per day,]
$350 per week, to cover costs for the following services that would
otherwise be performed by the qualified caregiver for the care recipient:
(1) Adult day care;
(2) Assisted transportation;
(4) Home-delivered meals;
(5) Homemaker services;
(6) Personal care;
(7) Respite care; or
that the allocated funds shall be issued directly to the service provider upon
request and receipt of an invoice for services rendered."
There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii
the sum of $2,000,000 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year
2019-2020 and the same sum or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal
year 2020-2021 for further implementation of the kupuna caregivers program.
The sums appropriated shall be expended by
the executive office on aging for the purposes of this Act.
Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2019.
Kupuna Caucus; Kupuna Caregivers Program; Allocation Cap; Appropriation
Changes the kupuna caregivers
program allocation cap from $70 per
day to $350 per week. Appropriates funds for the continued implementation of
the kupuna caregivers program. (SD1)
The summary description
of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is
not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.