The Governor has now signed into law the Human Services budget passed by the Illinois Legislature on May 31, 2102. This budget, contained in Public Act 97-0730, gives the Governor discretion to close any of the nine state mental hospitals but appropriates a total (in two line items) funding for state hospitals and transitions which exceeds the current amount being spent on state facilities. Specifically, for the current fiscal year (FY2012), the appropriation for state hospitals was $224.5 million. Senate Bill 2454 contains only $202.7 million for state facilities (Section 55, page 52, lines 1-9) but also appropriates $24.9 millioin for “mental health community transitions or state operated facilities” (Section 65, page 54, lines 2-4) for FY2013. Unfortunately, the Department of Human Services has announced that it does not intend to reinvest the money saved from the closure of Tinley Park on July 2nd and the the closure of Singer on October 31st .
The budget bill also appropriates $16.8 million for “rebalancing and transition costs associated with compliance with consent decrees.” (Section 60, page 52, lines 10-18). Presumably this is money to comply with the Williams v. Quinn and Colbert v. Quinn decrees.
The budget cuts $30 million (20%) from General Revenue Funding for community services grants, reducing this line from $144 million to $114 million. There are 2 new pots of money to support community services each with $20 million in them. However, there is some concern about whether these funds will really be available and, if so, when.
Funding for psychotropic medications in the community was cut from $1,980,000 to $1,900,800 (4%)
The entire line item of $742,000 for mental health transportation (getting people to state hospitals from remote counties) was eliminated.
Teen suicide prevention funding ($206,400) was eliminated.
Supportive housing funding was increased from $3.3 million to $5 million
Further analysis of the budget will be provided soon.