[First Reprint]


No. 158







Sponsored by:


District 11 (Monmouth)

Assemblywoman  JOANN DOWNEY

District 11 (Monmouth)


District 4 (Camden and Gloucester)

Senator  VIN GOPAL

District 11 (Monmouth)






     Establishes New Jersey Task Force on Medicaid Financial Resource Limits.



     As reported by the Assembly Human Services Committee on January 24, 2019, with amendments.


A Joint Resolution establishing the New Jersey Task Force on Medicaid Financial Resource Limits.


     Be It Resolved by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:


     1.    The Legislature finds and declares that:

     a.     Medicaid is a means-tested health care benefits program for eligible, low-income persons, established pursuant to the “New Jersey Medical Assistance and Health Services Act,” P.L.1968, c.413 (C.30:4D-1 et seq.) and administered by the Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services in the Department of Human Services in accordance with the requirements of Title XIX of the federal Social Security Act;

     b.    There are a variety of Medicaid eligibility pathways, with each imposing limits on both income and financial resources1[.];1

     c.     Certain individuals applying for Medicaid may find that they have too many financial resources to qualify for coverage, but too few financial resources to pay for the cost of their medical care;

     d.    Such individuals may choose to reduce the value of their resources through permitted transfers and spending to qualify for Medicaid; however, the need for Medicaid coverage, particularly in the case of senior citizens requiring long-term care, may be sudden, leaving little time to plan for this complex process; and

     e.     As a result, certain individuals and their families can be left responsible for significant medical bills incurred during the eligibility determination process, after the applicant’s resources have been reduced but before retroactive Medicaid coverage begins, causing financial burden and hardship.


     2.    There is established the New Jersey Task Force on Medicaid Financial Resource Limits. The purpose of this task force is to study State and federal laws and regulations concerning Medicaid financial resource limits, including, but not limited to, the authorized spend down of resources in excess of Medicaid limits for the purposes of Medicaid eligibility and the determination of eligibility and the commencement of benefits in such cases.  The task force shall make recommendations for legislation and strategies to create more effective and efficient policies regarding Medicaid financial resource limits and the eligibility determination process for applicants who must reduce the value of their resources in order to be eligible.


     3.    a.   The task force shall consist of 13 members as follows: the Commissioner of Human Services and the Director of the Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services within the Department of Human Services, or their designees, who shall serve as ex officio members; two members of the Senate and two members of the General Assembly, respectively, of which no more than one shall be of the same political party in each case; three public members appointed by the Governor; two public members appointed by the President of the Senate; and two public members appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly.

     All public members appointed to the task force shall possess relevant knowledge of Medicaid financial resource limits or the Medicaid eligibility determination process or both topics.

     b.    All appointments to the task force shall be made no later than the 60th day after the effective date of this act.  Vacancies in the membership of the task force shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments were made.  The members of the task force shall serve without compensation.

     c.     The task force shall organize as soon as practicable following the appointment of its members and shall select a chairperson and a vice-chairperson from among its members, as well as a secretary who need not be a member of the task force.


     4.    The Department of Human Services shall provide staff and related support services to the task force.  The task force shall also be entitled to call to its assistance and avail itself of the services of the employees of any State, county or municipal department, board, bureau, commission, or agency as it may require and as may be available to it for its purposes.


     5.    The task force may meet and hold hearings at the place or places it designates during the sessions or recesses of the Legislature and shall present its findings to the Legislature no later than six months after the date of organization of the task force.


     6.    This act shall take effect immediately and shall expire on the 30th day after the task force presents its findings to the Legislature pursuant to section 5 of this act.