Tompkins County
New York


Appropriation from Contingent Fund and Creation of Position – Mental Health Court Resource Coordinator


Department:Health DepartmentSponsors:
Category:BudgetFunctions:Contingent Fund, Mental Health, Personnel


  1. Printout

Resolution/Document Body

              WHEREAS, the Department of Mental Health Services, the City of Ithaca, and the Ithaca City Court have agreed to partner on the creation of a Mental Health Court Resource Coordinator to serve as a liaison between the Court, treatment providers, case managers, attorneys, law enforcement, court clerks and all other relevant stakeholders on behalf of individuals diagnosed with mental health conditions or co-occurring disorders, and


WHEREAS, the Expanded Budget Committee of the Tompkins County Legislature included “Funding for position of Resource Coordinator for Mental Health Court in Contingent Fund pending details from Mental Health Department and progress on Mental Health Court,” in its Tentative Budget via Amendment No. 28, on October 10, 2018, and subsequently adopted it as part of the 2019 Tompkins County Budget on Thursday, November 8, 2018, thus setting aside $50,000 for this purpose in the Contingent Fund, and


WHEREAS, this one-time funding is intended to demonstrate a need for a Mental Health Court in Tompkins County to leverage future ongoing funding from the New York State Office of Court Administration, now therefore be it


              RESOLVED, on recommendation of the Health and Human Services and the Budget, Capital and Personnel Committees, That one full-time, 40-hour per week position, of Mental Health Court Resource Coordinator (11/1561) is hereby created effective January 1, 2019, White Collar labor grade 11, competitive class,


RESOLVED, further, That the Director of Finance is hereby authorized and directed to make the following appropriation in the 2019 Budget:


DECREASE:                1990.54400              Contingent Fund                                                                      $50,000


INCREASE:              4310.42797              Other Local Govt Contributions                                          $25,000

                4310.51000561               Mental Health Court Resource Coordinator                            $43,153

              4310.54400              Program Expense                                                                      $10,784

              4310.58800              Fringes                                                                                    $21,063




Meeting History

Dec 10, 2018 4:00 PM  Health and Human Services Committee Regular Meeting

Mr. Kruppa explained that this resolution is follow-up to a discussion that took place during the budget process for this position. He stated a job description was drafted and reviewed by Human Resources and is now a position in the Civil Services pool. He and Judge Miller made a budget request of the City of Ithaca to assist in funding the position and $25,000 that has been approved for 2019. Judge Miller has been working on developing the program for the court including policies and procedures. Mr. Kruppa said he has been working with Dave Sanders to create results based accounting measures prior to the program going live to assist in tracking its success.

Mr. Kruppa stated the $50,000 provided through this resolution together with $25,000 from the City of Ithaca will allow for recruitment of a full-time position in 2019 for a Mental Health Court Resource Coordinator. The position would fall under the Mental Health Department in the County’s organizational chart but a majority of that person’s time would be spent in Court working closely with Judge Miller.

Mr. Kruppa and Judge Miller spoke of some of the areas that will be measured for success in the program that included stable housing and recidivism with a decrease in incarceration time. Judge Miller stated the program is ready and he has individuals already in need of the program. He is willing to start the program before the position is filled and the final meeting of the Planning Committee is December 18th to finalize the policy and procedural manual. He will provide a copy of that manual to the Legislature once it is finalized. He anticipates the Court’s capacity to be 30 to 40 participants.

Ms. Kelles asked about future funding from the State. Judge Miller explained that he has been in communication with Judge Fitzgerald, Sixth Judicial District Administrative Judge, and Office of Court Administration (OCA) about setting up this Court and has learned that if the Court is successful a request can be made of the State for funding. He is confident that the Court will be successful but not as confident that the State will provide future funding until all local funding sources have been exhausted.

Mr. Granison inquired about the history of the program in Auburn and its funding. Judge Miller stated that program is in its eleventh year and is part of OCA’s budget.

Judge Miller explained that an individual with a dual diagnosis of a mental health disorder and substance abuse would need to go through Mental Health Court due to it not being an abstinence-based program. He stated statistically 90% of the individuals in Mental Health Court who are suffering from a severe mental illness also have drug abuse issues. He further explained that Drug Treatment Court is an abstinence-based model that does not work in Mental Health Court.

Ms. Robertson asked how this relates to Tompkins County’s request for a third County Court Judge. Judge Miller said that as the Mental Health Court expands there will be even more of a need for a third Judge as County Court is short judges already.

Judge Miller stated he looks forward to reporting the success of the program at a future meeting.

MOVER:Anna Kelles, Vice Chair
SECONDER:Amanda Champion, Member
AYES:Shawna Black, Anna Kelles, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Henry Granison, Amanda Champion
Dec 11, 2018 4:00 PM  Budget, Capital and Personnel Committee Regular Meeting

Mr. Kruppa said Contingent Fund monies were approved through the 2019 budget process to fund a position of Resource Coordinator for a Mental Health Court pending a plan being developed. A job description has been created, policies and procedures are being finalized, and Mr. Kruppa is working with Dave Sanders, Criminal Justice Coordinator, to develop Results Based Accountability measures. This program is now ready to go and the Judge will be starting the Court in January. Mr. Kruppa would like to begin the recruitment process now for the new position with the hope of having someone in place in February.

MOVER:Glenn Morey, Member
SECONDER:Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Vice Chair
AYES:Michael Lane, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Glenn Morey, Daniel Klein
EXCUSED:Michael Sigler
Jan 3, 2019 5:30 PM Media Tompkins County Legislature Regular Meeting

This resolution was adopted by a short roll call vote.

MOVER:Shawna Black, Member
SECONDER:Anna Kelles, Member
AYES:Shawna Black, Amanda Champion, Deborah Dawson, Rich John, Anna Kelles, Daniel Klein, Anne Koreman, Michael Lane, David McKenna, Glenn Morey, Martha Robertson, Michael Sigler
EXCUSED:Henry Granison, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne