On April 28, 2016, the California Long-Term Care Ombudsman Association (CLTCOA) proposed a $5/bed tax on all RCFEs to provide additional funding to the State’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP).
Watch footage from the April 28, 2016 Senate Budget & Fiscal Review Subcommittee #3 on Health and Human Services to hear the CLTCOA’s $5/bed RCFE tax proposal and 6Beds’ opposition testimony by 6Beds lobbyist, Robert Naylor.
While 6Beds supports the CLTCOA’s request for more funding from the State’s General Fund, 6Beds does not believe that additional funding for the LTCOP should come at the direct expense of small-home RCFE operators that, in just the last two years, have been heavily burdened by costly regulations, including:
- 30% increase in licensing fees to help fund Community Care Licensing functions, including a return to annual inspections
- Liability insurance mandate, costing thousands of dollars a year in insurance premiums
- Significant increase in civil penalties
- Quadrupling caregiver training hours
- Doubling administrator certification hours
- Increasing Medication Training
- Expanding dementia care training
6Beds understands that the State has made changes with the goal of improving California’s residential care system, but these changes come with a cost that impact both small-home RCFE’s and their residents. There is now data that shows there are more RCFE closures than openings, resulting in a net loss of facilities at a time when California’s older adult population is expanding rapidly. Most of these closures are voluntary closures, which suggest that the primary reason for closures is lack of economic viability.
Some argue that the proposed tax does not represent a significant dollar amount. However, 6Beds is opposed to all taxes that target residential care operators, regardless of the size of the tax. Any RCFE tax, regardless of amount, sets a bad precedent that can open the floodgates for future taxes on RCFEs and other residential care operators.
6Beds members strive to provide safe, quality, and affordable residential care. 6Beds understands the purpose of the LTCOP and the positive role that it can play in the residential care system, which is why 6Beds supports the CLTCOA’s General Fund request and, potentially, alternative funding sources that do not rely on taxing RCFE operators.