BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



          SENATE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
                             Senator Ricardo Lara, Chair
                            2015 - 2016  Regular  Session

          SB 515 (Beall) - Grant programs
          
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          |Version: April 6, 2015          |Policy Vote: PUB. S. 7 - 0      |
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          |Urgency: No                     |Mandate: No                     |
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          |Hearing Date: May 11, 2015      |Consultant: Jolie Onodera       |
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          This bill meets the criteria for referral to the Suspense File.




          Bill  
          Summary:  SB 515 would require the Board of State and Community  
          Corrections (BSCC) to award at least two-thirds of the grant  
          funding that is received by the BSCC under Proposition 47 to be  
          allocated to public behavioral health agencies, or other public  
          agencies that provide behavioral health services, as specified.


          Fiscal  
          Impact:  
           Potentially significant increases in future grant awards  
            (Special Fund*) to state and local agencies to support  
            behavioral health programs, offset by comparable decreases in  
            future grant awards (Special Fund*) to state and local  
            agencies that otherwise would have been awarded funds under  
            the broader purposes authorized under existing law.  
           Potential increases or decreases in annual BSCC administrative  
            costs (Special Fund*) to administer and award grants under the  







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            required minimum two-thirds of the total allocation to support  
            behavioral health programs. While the five percent cap on  
            administrative costs remains unchanged, to the extent the BSCC  
            would receive greater or fewer proposals to review, or incur  
            varying workload costs to administer grant awards for specific  
            types of programs could result in an impact on total  
            administrative costs. 

          *Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund (SNSF)


          Background:  In 2014, the voters approved Proposition 47, the Safe  
          Neighborhoods and Schools Act, which reduces the penalties for  
          certain drug and property crimes and requires the resulting  
          state savings be disbursed by August 15 of each fiscal year  
          beginning in 2016 to various state agencies for specified  
          purposes, as follows:

             Twenty-five percent to the Department of Education, to  
             administer a grant program to public agencies aimed at  
             improving outcomes for public school pupils in kindergarten  
             and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, by reducing truancy and  
             supporting students who are at risk of dropping out of  
             school or are victims of crime.



             Ten percent to the Victim Compensation and Government  
             Claims Board, to make grants to trauma recovery centers to  
             provide services to victims of crime.



             Sixty-five percent to the BSCC to administer a grant  
             program to public agencies aimed at supporting mental  
             health treatment, substance abuse treatment, and diversion  
             programs for people in the criminal justice system, with an  
             emphasis on programs that reduce recidivism of people  
             convicted of less serious crimes and those who have  
             substance abuse and mental health problems.



           Under existing law, the agency responsible for administering  








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           the programs shall not spend more than five percent of the  
           total funds it receives from the SNSF on an annual basis for  
           administrative costs. (Government Code  7599.2.)




          Proposed Law:  
           This bill would require the BSCC, in awarding grants pursuant  
          to Proposition 47, to allocate at least two-thirds of the grant  
          funding to public behavioral health agencies, or other public  
          agencies that provide behavioral health services, that will use  
          the grant funds to provide evidence-based mental health services  
          and substance use disorder treatment services that are provided  
          by licensed or certified behavioral health professionals and  
          counselors.


          Related  
          Legislation:  AB 1056 (Atkins) 2015 would create the Second  
          Chance Program, to support mental health treatment, substance  
          use treatment, and diversion programs for persons in the  
          criminal justice system, with an emphasis on programs that  
          reduce recidivism of persons convicted of less serious crimes,  
          such as those covered by Proposition 47, and those who have  
          substance use and mental health problems.
          This bill would require the BSCC to deposit funds it receives  
          under Proposition 47 into the Second Chance Fund for the  
          purposes of the Second Chance Program. This bill is pending  
          hearing in the Assembly Committee on Appropriations.




          Staff  
          Comments:  By requiring the BSCC to award at least two-thirds of  
          its Proposition 47 disbursement to behavioral health programs,  
          as specified, the provisions of this bill could result in  
          potentially significant increases in annual grant awards to  
          public agencies providing evidence-based mental health services  
          and substance use disorder treatment services. Consequently,  
          however, state and local agencies providing alternative programs  
          aimed at reducing recidivism would likely be awarded a reduced  
          amount of grant funding, as the amount available to support the  








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          broader purposes authorized under existing law would be  
          restricted to at most one-third of the total annual  
          disbursement.   

          The net impact on annual BSCC costs to administer and award  
          grants under the two-thirds allocation to support behavioral  
          health programs is unknown, and would be dependent on any change  
          in volume of grant proposals received that would require BSCC  
          review, as well as the varying workload required to administer  
          grant awards for various types of programs (i.e., housing  
          assistance, restorative justice services, or substance use  
          disorder treatment). While the five percent cap on  
          administrative costs remains unchanged, to the extent the BSCC  
          would incur varying workload costs to administer grant awards  
          for specific types of programs could result in an impact on  
          total administrative costs. 


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