House Approves Senate Changes to Supplemental Bill House Approves Senate Changes to SF 2071, Prison Supplemental Bill

On Tuesday, February 21, the House approved Senate File 2071, the FY 12 supplemental appropriations bill.

When the Senate initially approved the bill, $8.5 million was appropriated to the Department of Corrections. The bill also created a third round of funding available from the Mental Health Risk Pool ($5.0 million). The Senate approved the bill on February 1 on a 26-23 party-line vote.

The House approved the bill for the first time on February 15 on a 96-0 vote. The House reduced the supplemental to the Governor’s recommendation of $6.5 million and off-set the appropriation by reducing the appropriation for Medicaid by $6.5 million. The House also changed the risk pool language to only allow for the first two tiers of counties to be eligible for the additional mental health funding.

On Monday, February 20, the Senate approved the bill for a second time. The House agreed to add $1 million for prisons and CBCs, which went to the following institutions as follows:

Rockwell City Prison — $86,998
Clarinda Prison — $187,387
Mitchellville Prison — $216,965
Fort Dodge Prison — $196,961
CBC District 2 — $130,853
CBC District 4 — $25,498
CBC District 5 — $155,338

The Senate in turn agreed to make the bill revenue neutral, which they achieved by cutting $1 million from utility expenses. DOC, Judicial Branch and the Regents are exempt from this requirement.

In addition, the Senate appropriated $7.2 million from the Economic Emergency Fund (EEF) to restore the standing appropriation to the Property Tax Relief fund for mental health services. This is needed to prevent a $7.2 million property tax increase due to approving a two-year budget last session.

Finally, the Senate amendment removes the provision that county MHMRDD committees are not required to submit a three-year strategic plan by April 1, 2012 to DHS, since the Legislature is in the process of overhauling state mental health services.

The House approved the Senate amendment on a voice vote and approved SF 2071 on a 95-0 vote.