California Healthline Highlights Mental Health Funding Developments in Sacramento, San Luis Obispo Counties
Officials in Sacramento and San Luis Obispo counties this week will consider proposals for Proposition 63 funds, which state voters approved in November 2004 to provide funds for mental health services. Summaries appear below.
A "last-minute compromise" has added Psychiatric Emergency Response Teams, comprising law enforcement officers and psychiatric social workers to a list of possible uses of Proposition 63 funds being considered by the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors, the Sacramento Bee reports.
The program was eliminated from the list in October because of funding concerns. However, Sacramento Police Chief Albert Najera last week in an open letter urged the community to support the program. Najera also worked on a compromise to reduce the program's cost and number of staff.
Najera's proposal would establish four two-person teams at a cost of about $1.3 million annually, rather than 12 teams as originally proposed. In addition, the police department would pay for outfitting the officers in the program instead of using Proposition 63 funds.
Sacramento County will receive about $10 million in Proposition 63 funds in each of the next three years, according to the Bee.
A public comment session for the allocation of Proposition 63 funds is scheduled for Wednesday, and the county Board of Supervisors is expected to submit a final plan to the state in January (Jahn, Sacramento Bee, 12/3).
San Luis Obispo County likely will receive an additional $2.3 million in Proposition 63 funds for mental health programs that target at-risk youth, Latinos and adults with mental illnesses, the San Luis Obispo Tribune reports.
Allocation of the funds has not been finalized, but the money is expected to be used to subsidize housing for 20 to 30 individuals or families annually, provide work training for 100 individuals annually, hire additional staff to keep discharged patients on a recovery program and establish treatment programs for patients who speak little or no English.
County officials will hear public comment on the proposal on Thursday before submitting the plan to the state (Welton, San Luis Obispo Tribune, 12/5).