As the session wraps up, we’re getting a better picture of what the budget is going to look like. Overall, thinks look pretty good for county government.
You can view the approved funding items presented at the most recent meeting of the Executive Appropriations Committee here. Below, I’ll attempt to highlight some of the budget items impacting county government.
Justice Reinvestment Initiative
The legislature deserves a whole lot of credit this year for recognizing the need to fund the justice reinvestment initiative. They’ve done so in a big way. First, they moved the previous one-time $6.4M Medicaid mental health match to an ongoing appropriation and then they appropriated an additional $5M in new ongoing funds towards the Medicaid match.
They’ve also appropriated another $6M towards behavioral treatment of the JRI population in ongoing funds. These new funds will be distributed through an application review and fund distribution committee and by a competitive application process. For more on the makeup of the committee, please look to SB 261.
Jail Contracting and Reimbursement
The legislature has appropriated an additional $427K in ongoing jail contract treatment funds as well as an additional $500K in ongoing jail contracting.
As for jail reimbursement, the legislature is appropriating $1.725M in ongoing funds.
Once again, we really appreciate the legislature’s recognition of these important programs.
- Even with the surprising demise of HB 452, the legislature is looking to fund Utah’s homelessness problem. The budget calls for just over $10M in one-time and ongoing funds for homeless to housing reform.
- The legislature is appropriating an ongoing $150K towards surveyor’s monument replacement.
- $400K is appropriated in one-time funds towards the Foundation for Integrated Resource Management (FIRM).
With all this said, there are still two days left in the session. There is still plenty of time for things to change, but we’re fairly confident in these numbers. And we are very grateful for the legislature emphasis on these important issues. Click here to view a complete rundown of all the issues of county interest included in the legislature’s approved funding items.
Arie Van De Graaff