|Commission on Behavioral Health|
In 1985, The Nevada Commission on Behavioral Health was created with the intent to provide accountability to the taxpayers and the Nevada Legislature, evaluate future state needs, develop a mental health plan for the state, upgrade the quality of care to patients, establish programs to prevent mental illness, provide a public forum for mental health, provide through the membership needed new perspectives, increase knowledge in treatment of mental illness, be representative of mental health and improve the system in coordination of all mental health programs, and overall better the system.
Statutory Responsibilities – NRS 232 and 433
Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) document Nevada's public mental health system for children and adults. They are the laws of the State of Nevada. NRS has many chapters each which pertain to specific state and agency functions. They are interpreted by our Deputy Attorney General (DAG) who attends all publicly posted meetings and provides ongoing legal consultation.
The Commission is appointed by the Governor. You can learn about who is on the Commission by reading http://www.leg.state.nv.us/NRS/NRS-232A.html.
You can learn more about what the Commission is empowered to do by reading http://www.leg.state.nv.us/NRS/NRS-433.html. The Commission is required to report to the Governor and Legislature using an annual "communication," usually a letter or report that is sent in February of each year.
The Nevada Commission on Behavioral Health is a 10-member legislatively created body designed to provide policy guidance and oversight of Nevada's public system of integrated care and treatment of adults and children with mental health and substance abuse. The service delivery system is administered by state agencies in Nevada through the Division of Public and Behavioral Health and the Division of Child and Family Services. The Commission also promotes and assures the protection of the rights of all clients in this system.
2009 Legislative Changes Shape the Commission
Two bills passed in the last legislative session (June 2009) mandated major new responsibilities in the area(s) of co-occurring disorders and children's services.
SB 79 – Requires the Commission include co-occurring disorders in their scope of powers and duties and requires creation of a standing subcommittee on the mental health of children. You can read SB 79 in its entirety at: http://www.leg.state.nv.us/75th2009/Reports/history.cfm?ID=160
SB 13 – Existing law has already established three mental health consortia; Clark, Washoe, and one mental health consortium in the region that comprises all other counties; and prescribes the membership of each mental health consortium (NRS 433B.333). SB 13 requires each of these three consortia to submit to the Director of the Department and the Commission on Behavioral Health in even-numbered years any revisions to the long-term strategic plan and a prioritized list of services and costs necessary to implement the plan. The list of priorities and costs submitted by each consortium must be considered by the Director in preparing the biennial budget request for the Department. You can read this bill (SB 131) in its entirety at: http://www.leg.state.nv.us/75th2009/Reports/history.cfm?ID=338. In odd-numbered years, each consortium must submit a report regarding the status of the long-term strategic plan and any revisions made to the plan. The Commissions formal strategic planning process is designed to assure compliance with these statutes.