Funding woes could mean mental health service cuts

Published On: Dec 19 2012 10:35:25 AM CST
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -

A lack of state funding to help Iowa counties switch to a new regional mental health system could mean cuts to mental health services.

County mental health administrators told The Des Moines Register that state administrators are proposing the Legislature put less than $1.5 million into a transition fund, which county officials say is woefully short.

Polk County's mental health programs supervisor Lynn Ferrell says state leaders promised at least $20 million would be put into the fund early next year. State administrators say no such promise was made.

Ferrell says a lack of funding means he might have to cut services to people with autism and cerebral palsy.

Linn County supervisor Linda Langston says she might cut psychiatric medication and short-term rent subsidies for mentally ill residents.