NJAMHAA

FY2019 Budget Includes Safety Net Funding,
Maintains CMO and Direct Service Provider Increases 

July 2, 2018 

Governor Phil Murphy signed a FY2019 budget that had been agreed to with the Legislature on Saturday, narrowly avoiding a government shutdown. The budget represents a 4.2% spending increase over FY2018.

While major differences existed over revenue streams, every spending item that the Legislature had added in their budget bill was maintained by Governor Murphy. Among these was the Legislature’s restoration of funding to Care Management Organizations (CMO) to allow them to maintain their FY2018 per child/per month rate of $775. CMO funding stands at $116.641 million, an increase over FY2018’s adjusted appropriation of $113.986 million. Both Mobile Response and Stabilization Services (MRSS) and Intensive In-Home Behavioral Assistance (IIH), which had been increased in the Governor’s proposed budget, received further increases in the Legislature’s final budget bill. MRSS, funded last year at $39.084 million, is now funded at $44.532 million, and IIH is funded at $135.995 million.

Also of great significance is the $500,000 safety net funding for programs that transitioned to fee-for-service (FFS). While this is clearly inadequate to cover the deficits providers are facing while waiting for the independent rate study required by the FFS oversight bill passed last year, NJAMHAA has been informed that the process has begun to draft a supplemental bill for FY2019 that would increase this budget line. NJAMHAA’s message has resonated with the Legislature and Governor’s office and we are pleased to have a presence in the budget that we can build upon; the FFS safety net funding represents the only increase made by the Legislature to the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services budget. “This is exciting news as it sets a precedent for additional safety net funding in future budgets. Even more promising is that a bill for supplemental funds is being developed,” said Debra L. Wentz, PhD, President and CEO of NJAMHAA.

 

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