Breaking: NYS Assembly Restores Childrens' Behavioral Health Initiative

The NYS Assembly’s newly released one-house budget proposal provides $15 million to put the expansion of children's mental health services back on track.

Advocates raised a strong protest in reaction to a cut in the Governor’s budget that sought to push the expansion back 2 years. In a meeting earlier this week, key Administration officials demonstrated a willingness to revisit a measure they acknowledged was one of the hardest and last cuts made.

According the Politico “the debate has focused around a State Plan Amendment, set to take effect July 1, that would allow Medicaid to pay for new behavioral health services such as peer support and skill building for kids, and respite for parents. These would typically be provided to the most medically fragile children, emotionally disturbed or developmentally disabled children, or children in foster care.”

The state Senate has not yet released its one-house budget. Negotiations over a final draft will take place over the next two weeks as all try to have a finished product by the end of the month.