County Bracing for Big Cuts in Mental Health, Elsewhere

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Four county departments are taking cuts: health and human services, sheriff, probation and human assistance.  Chief operations officer Nav Gill says these cuts come directly from Governor Schwarzenegger and California lawmakers.
Gill: “That’s the reductions that the state ended up making, and we’re making the corresponding reductions.” 
Some of the biggest cuts will go to mental health programs.  County mental health chief Leland Tom says his department’s budget will take a $1.2 million hit.
Tom: “Which is gonna impact our ability to provide emergency services, possibly, to individuals who go into crisis and need mental health services, especially if they need acute care.” 
Supervisors will vote on the final budget at their Wednesday meeting.  Meanwhile, look for additional cuts in the coming months – the governor and legislature are debating more service reductions, and the bad economy could force even greater cuts if property and sales tax revenues continue to slump.