Last night and this morning, the Assembly and Senate introduced their one house bill related to this year’s budget. While there is much to analyze, three of the most significant issues that MHANYS and others advocates have put forward appears to be addressed by the Legislature.
- The Legislature rejects the Executives 5% cut to mental health services
- The Legislature supports the inclusive of Reinvestment language back in the budget which means that there should be an additional $22 million in the budget to increase the Reinvestment pool to over $120 million to help support community services
- The Legislature also added back the one percent COLA in this year’s budget that provides an additional $15 million to the mental health sector.
This language overall rejects over fifty million dollars in proposed cuts to mental health this year. We are very appreciative of the legislature’s stance on that and thank our Assembly Mental Hygiene Chair, Aileen Gunther and Senate Mental Hygiene Chair, Samra Brouk for their leadership
In addition, as we continue our analysis, it appears that MHANYS funding priorities around the Dwyer Project, Mobil Crisis Teams, Stabilization Centers, Adult Home Advocates funding, Prescriber Prevails, CIT, Kendra’s Law Language and Mental Health First Aid have also been addressed.
This is the opening salvo in the final budget negotiation expected to be in place by April 1. There will likely be a lot of jockeying going on but the fact that the Legislature was strong in supporting our priorities combined with the Federal Stimulus money, should be a positive in terms of final budget negotiations.
Your advocacy matters. Stay tuned over next few weeks to see how you can help raise your voice for these issues.
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