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On November 12, the House of Representatives passed the FY21 budget. I am sharing with you a summary of a few sections, compiled by House Chair of the Mental Health, Substance Use and Recovery Committee, Representative Marjorie Decker.

FY21 House Budget:

Mental Health, Substance Use and Recovery Funding Highlights

Department of Mental Health

5042-5000: Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services

This line item is funded at $94.6 million for mental health care for children and adolescents, including community-based mental health services and evidence-based trauma treatments. It includes $3.9 million for the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Program (MCPAP). MCPAP makes child psychiatry consultations accessible to primary care providers—and, as a result, their patients—across the state and also includes mental health and substance use disorder support for pregnant and postpartum women.

This line item also allocates $50,000 to the Massachusetts Association for Mental Health to partner with the BIRCh Center to develop a plan for establishment of a school based behavioral health technical assistance center. The technical center would be a home to support schools in a variety of ways to implement best practices in behavioral health promotion, prevention and intervention that are centered in evidence based research and would allow school professionals to share best practices with others across the state.

5046-0000: Adult Mental Health & Support Services 

This line item is funded at $500 million for adult mental health services. It includes $100,000 for culturally and linguistically appropriate mental health services for immigrants and refugees who have experienced torture and trauma and $2,000,000 for jail diversion and police efforts, of which $250,000 is directed towards expansion of safe haven housing for mentally ill adults who have been chronically homeless and are currently living in a shelter or on the streets in Boston.

5046-2000: Homelessness Support Services

This line item includes $22.8 million for programming for homeless individuals across the state, many of whom struggle with complex mental health and substance use needs.

5047-0001: Emergency Service Programs and Mental Health Care

This line item is funded at $22.1 million for emergency service programs (ESPs) and acute inpatient mental health care services. ESPs provide crisis response to DMH and non-DMH clients in the community, diverting people from the emergency department (ED) and providing specialized support.

5055-0000: Forensic Services

This line item contains $11.1 million for court clinics, psychiatric evaluations, and other costs associated with justice-involved persons with mental health needs.

5095-0015: Inpatient Facilities & Community Based Mental Health

This line item is funded at $230 million for the operation of hospital facilities and community-based mental health services. This includes inpatient facilities, which provide continuing care to patients who require long-term services typically not offered outside of DMH.

7004-9033: Rental Subsidy Program for DMH Clients *(DMH-related)

This line item is funded at $10,548,125 for affordable housing vouchers for individuals with serious behavioral health conditions who are homeless, unstably housed, or ready to discharge from DMH inpatient units.

Department of Public Health

4510-0112: Postpartum Depression Pilot Program

This line item is funded at $300,000. Funding is directed toward the Department of Public Health to conduct a postpartum depression pilot program at community health centers in the cities of Holyoke, Lynn, Worcester and in Jamaica Plain.

4512-0200: Bureau of Substance Addiction Services (BSAS)

This line item is funded at $161,689,276. Funding is directed towards the opening of 5 new recovery centers, 3 of which will, to the extent possible, serve gateway cities. It also includes funding for the Massachusetts Access to Recovery (MA-ATR) program, which offers recovery support for individuals who have an opioid use disorder (OUD) or those who are at risk of developing one. It also allocates funds to procure 5 additional family sober living programs across the state and for voluntary training and accreditation programs for owners and operators of alcohol and drug free housing.

4512-0201: Substance use disorder step-down recovery services

This line item invests $4,533,180 for substance use disorder step-down recovery services, known as level B beds and services as well as other critical recovery services with severely reduced capacity.

4512-0202: Jail Diversion Programs for Opiate Addiction

This line item invests $1,350,000 in jail diversion programming. This funding will ensure that non-violent offenders primarily suffering from opiate addiction receive treatment rather than be incarcerated.

4512-0203: Young Adult Treatment Program and Early Intervention Services

This line item invests $1,440,450 for intervention and care management for young adults dependent on or addicted to alcohol, controlled substances or both.

4512-0204: First-Responder and Bystander Naloxone Distribution Programs

This line item includes $1,020,000 for first-responder and bystander naloxone distribution programs, which help ensure life-saving access to this opioid overdose reversal drug. Funds will also maintain first-responder and bystander naloxone distribution grants in communities with high incidence of overdose.

4512-0205: Comprehensive prevention, intervention and recovery services

This line item is funded at $312,000 for grants and contracts with substance use programs to provide comprehensive prevention, intervention and recovery services in localities across the Commonwealth.

4512-0206: Harm Reduction

This line item includes $4,780,000 to coordinate a comprehensive statewide strategy to promote harm reduction efforts, which work to reduce negative consequences associated with drug use, at the statewide and community levels.

4513-1026: Suicide Prevention

This line item is funded at $6,120,372 for suicide prevention efforts. Programming provides support to community agencies, education and training for professionals and caregivers, and funds programs working with veterans and older adults.

4590-0930: Naloxone Bulk Purchasing Program

This line item provides $500,000 for municipalities purchasing naloxone through the bulk purchasing program.

Other Behavioral Health Investments

Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

7061-9607: Recovery High Schools 

This line item is funded at $2.6 million for the coverage of administrative, programmatic and operations costs of recovery high schools. Recovery high schools are public schools where students can both earn a high school diploma and also receive recovery support from alcohol and drug use.  These programs provide our adolescents and young adults with opportunities to continue their education, while simultaneously receiving quality treatment for their mental health issues.

7061-9650: Supporting Healthy Alliances Reinforcing Education (SHARE)

This line item includes $2 million for the Supporting Healthy Alliances Reinforcing Education (SHARE) to provide student wellness grant programs to schools to coordinate with community-based resources, including social services, mental health, and behavioral health.

Executive Office of Health and Human Services

1595-1071: Community Behavioral Health Promotion and Prevention Trust Fund

This line item directs $200,000 to fund the Community Behavioral Health Promotion and Prevention Trust Fund. The Trust Fund will support grants issued to community organizations to establish or support evidence-based and evidence-informed programs for children and young adults.

4000-0950: Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative 

This line item provides $268,301,633 for administrative and program expenses to provide comprehensive, community-based behavioral health services for children suffering from extreme emotional disturbances.


0321-2000: Mental Health Legal Advisors

This line item funds Mental Health Legal Advisors at $2,085,321 which provides legal and policy for those with mental health challenges.

0340-0203: Drug Diversion Programs

This line item funds $499,950 to the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association for drug diversion programs for young adult non-violent drug offenders.

Department of Correction

8900-0003: Reform to Mental and Behavioral Health

This line item allocates $4,803,797 to implement mandated reforms to mental and behavioral health and residential treatment connected to the Department of Correction.

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