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$173 million-plus, sitting idle… while jail deaths, homeless deaths, overdose deaths soar. What gives?

Last updated on May 15, 2023

The San Diego County Behavioral Health Services (BHS) can’t seem to help itself.

When the state-mandated oversight body, the Behavioral Health Advisory Board, empowered by law to ensure abuses like this don’t get out of hand, is muzzled by the BHS, things… well… get out of hand.

Page 43, 2022-23 MHSA Three-Year Plan Annual Update

In this case, the current year’s MHSA Annual ‘Plan’ Update, the BHS is forecasting sitting on over $173m – above and beyond the recently reduced (by the state because they believed counties were sitting on too much money in their ‘prudent’ reserve) Prudent Reserve.

If you had a choice would you sit on all that money? Or, might you put it to work?

The good news is you have a say in how the entire $900m BHS budget is deployed.

The bad news is the BHS by all appearances does all it can to prevent you from opportunities to become meaningfully informed and engaged in the process they are mandated by law to follow.

How so? The BHS releases a ‘plan’ for your review and comment – three months after they have begun spending that $900m budget (on average having already spent $225m). Does that make sense?

When do we stand up and say enough!

{note: hyperlinks don’t work in this copy of the plan released on September 6th, and the BHS will likely post an updated version here sometime.}

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