Archive for Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bert Nash mental health center to reduce services, staff due to state budget cuts

December 15, 2009

Lawrence’s Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center will lose an additional $785,000 in funding in 2010 due to state budget cuts.

CEO David Johnson announced today that the loss of revenue is forcing the agency to reduce services and eliminate staff.

“The severity of budget cuts will mean that the level of service we can provide to the community will be deeply affected,” Johnson said in a press release. “Additionally, we are going to have to cut staff, reduce salaries and reduce benefits to existing staff.”

The new budget cuts represent a total of $1.4 million in reduced state and local funding for Bert Nash since 2007.

Bert Nash provided the following list of adjustments to programs and services that will have to be made for the 2010 budget year:

• Eliminate a transitional housing program.

• Eliminate fee waivers except for emergent intakes and services. Point Of Service payment required to receive services for all others.

• Reduce supported housing flex funds by 75 percent.

• Reduce community outreach aging specialist. The entire position. What did this person do?

• Continue to assess potential savings in all programs/contracts that may fall outside Bert Nash statutory requirements.

• Transfer Prescription Assistance Program requests to the Leo Center.

• Identify other community alternatives for indigent services.

• Eliminate seven positions.

• Pay cut for eight executives equal to one day/month and varying pay reductions for nine supervisory clinicians providing specific after hours therapy.

• Furlough of one day/month for 22 management staff.

• One week reduction in vacation for remaining staff.

• Eliminate discretionary training for employees.

• Eliminate cost of staff recognition program.

Check back at LJWorld.com for more details on how these cuts will affect Douglas County residents and other agencies.

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