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California Audit Points to Lack of Oversight of Mental Health Funding

The California State Auditor said there's little oversight of a mental health services fund that has brought in billions of tax dollars over the years.

Aired 8/15/13 on KPBS News.

The California State Auditor says there’s little oversight of a mental health services fund that has brought in billions of tax dollars over the years.

The audit found state agencies haven't made 'serious efforts' to look into the effectiveness of county programs - such as conducting site visits to evaluate local use of state funds.

Democratic State Senate President Darrell Steinberg helped create the Mental Health Services Act under voter-approved Proposition 63.

"I'm pleased that the audit didn't you know in any way say that there is any money being misspent, but points out that there needs to be more evaluation and I fully support that," Steinberg said.

Millionaires in California are taxed one percent of their incomes to finance the program which is intended to address mental illness with prevention and early intervention.

The report calls on Sacramento, San Bernardino and Santa Clara counties to review their mental health programs and make necessary changes.

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