CARE Court

County Budget Concerns 

Several Counties that are in the process of implementing the CARE Act have raised concerns to the Governor and Budget Chairs regarding the failure to include funding for counsel for county behavioral health agencies who are responsible for planning and implementing the State’s new CARE Court program. Concerns include “the Administration’s underlying workload assumptions for behavioral health professionals required to execute the CARE Act fall short of what is needed to effectively execute court appearances, preparation and coordination, noticing, care plan development, case management, housing services/supports, and outreach/engagement” and the “Administration’s May Revision estimates fail to adequately acknowledge the critical and significant role of county legal representation in the CARE Act process.” You may read the full letters outlining concerns below.

Letter to Governor
Letter to Budget Chairs 

Implementation of California’s CARE Act Report 

A report was recently was put together by a UC Berkeley Public Policy graduate student who worked with CalHHS this spring to document ongoing implementation of the CARE Act in Cohort 1 counties. The report includes (1) a high level summary of what the CARE Act is, (2) what it means for counties and courts in the context of other statewide Behavioral Health initiatives, (3) what Cohort 1 counties are doing to prepare and (4) recommendations for both Cohort 2 counties and state entities. See here.  

SB 35 Amended 

SB 35 (Umberg) – the “clean up” bill to the CARE Act – has been amended. The amendments address the following:

  1. Clarifies DHCS deadline to approve requests for implementation delay
  2. Clarifies the relationship between a tribal petitioner and the respondent 
  3. Proceedings can be conducted by subordinate judicial officers 
  4. There shall be no filing fee
  5. Petitioners have right to an interpreter 
  6. Changes the appeals process 
  7. Removes appointment process for supporters
  8. Clarifies the timing of the evaluation 
  9. Additional technical clean up 

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