The state Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities has approved a fiscal 2014 budget that includes reductions to service providers, the closing of a nursing home and probable job cuts.
Like other state agencies, DBHDD is required to cut its budget 3 percent under orders from Gov. Nathan Deal’s Office of Planning and Budget. The state has been struggling with sluggish tax revenues amid a slow economy.
The current fiscal year also will take $27.8 million in cuts, but the fiscal 2014 reduction of the same amount will be much more difficult to absorb, agency officials said Thursday at their board meeting.
Jeff Minor, deputy commissioner of DBHDD, noted that the agency’s approval of a budget is just “the first step in a long process’’ of reaching a final budget.
“We hope it’s not a done deal,’’ Minor said of the austere new plan. “Some cuts we can take; some cuts are very difficult to take.’’
Spared from the budget knife is funding for the settlement agreements with the Department of Justice to boost community services and to improve state hospital care. Medicaid matching funds also have been exempted. full story