• dc matthews

    How about doing some shelter beds for those homeless disabled vets can’t get OC shelter, as most require substance abuse or children or at least able to work in 30 days. $ can help make down pay refurbish an old motel or large house and get some off the street using HUD and other monies during long waits for accessible housing using VASH.

  • kburgoyne

    Oh com’on. PUHHHLEEEEZE. The solution to this is blatantly obvious.

    The supervisors just need to find the right crony capitalist corporation that knows which politicians are to receive the proper campaign bribes. The corporation simply charges twice as much to provide the services, and all the money gets spent. No more surplus. Problem solved!

    Who else has a problem that needs solving? The doctor is in! 🙂

    • MsPolly

      It is government behaving in its’ usual manner that perpetuates this problem–not corporations. Hand in hand, OCEA is implicitly to blame. If these services were privatized you would find that more people would profit–most importantly, those suffering from mental health challenges and drug addiction including the homeless.

      • dc matthews

        except that most OC’s docs don’t want to take medicaid ( CalOptima) patients. Even for adults w physical disabilities, specialists are too few.

        • MsPolly

          Medi-Cal reimburses at such a low rate that it is not profitable for a practitioner to take Medi-Cal. Don’t blame the MDs for being ‘greedy’ because they have bills, too, from an inflated medical school system. Get government out of the business of providing health care, reform taxation to be more fair and make a few other changes and watch the kindness of those living in America display itself in charitable and more effective provision of care.

  • John Claxton

    This money appears to have bought a really nice motor home. I wonder how many of the Supes have taken it on vacation?

  • OCservant_Leader

    This stockpile of $$$ —is outrageous and screams incompetence!

    The entire leadership of MHSA –(or the 6 “friends” who have controlled it since day one) need to be replaced by qualified–experienced–innovative professionals.

    This little group doesn’t have one idea between them. But they protect themselves –viciously. They manage those funds using an abacus because that’s the way they ” have always done it” and don’t know any better.

    The dysfunction inside This Agency –like an untreated mental illness – is now a full blown psychosis impacting the entire County.

  • MsPolly

    As someone who is close to this story I find this article misleading and wanting of a more serious attempt at journalism. There are mischaracterizations and misleading information on both sides of the position written in this article. I could go on to discuss these point by point but it would do no good, I fear journalism is dying a long and nearly silent death; the bar must be very low to serve as a Grand Juror. I wish Mr. Gerda or the Grand Jury had interviewed me. In my informed opinion there are mistruths “reported” in this article and the real victims are the public, especially those suffering from mental health difficulties.

    In short, there is a lot of county waste and I question the caretakers. I equally question the integrity of the BOS, however. The employees association (OCEA) is no better. Think X-Files; Trust No One (with an agenda).

    Read Mr. Gerda’s article with a grain of salt.

    • OCservant_Leader

      It is misleading –not to ID yourself as the PIO or EA for this Agency.

      • MsPolly

        I am neither. So, I am not misleading. The PIO nor the EA would admit none of the facts where were alluded to in Mr. Gerda’s article. He has to do more investigation. He needs to ask more people and get a fuller conceptualization of the program.
        Your comment from two days ago is heading in the correct direction, by the way.

    • Jacki Livingston

      Oh, PUHLEEZE! As someone who is close to this story…why don’t you come out and say who you are? You have zero credibility when you do this, and then you have the nerve to criticize the writer of the story? You, madam, are a part of the problem. You are like every other manager I ever encountered in the County cesspool. You are always happy to run your mouths to criticize those who dare to shine a light, but you run and scatter like roaches when the light is on. I take anything said by any manager at any agency in the county with a mountain of salt, because you all will lie, cheat and protect each other, while destroying anyone who dares to speak. Cowards and bullies, the lot of ya.

      • MsPolly

        You have misunderstood me, I believe. I welcome the spotlight. I just think that the ‘journalist’ is not casting a bright light or fully illuminating the issue. Actually, it’s worse than that because he quoted half-truths.
        I am not a manager. Check your assumptions!! If I were, my comment would be professional suicide. Those close to the story are only going to freely speak if they are given anonymity. The managers, etc. may be poor managers but they’re not so stupid as to commit seppuku on the voiceofoc website.
        Your anger is not serving you well.

        • Jacki Livingston

          My anger is not serving me well???? That is a joke, right? My anger? Oh, honey, I passed angry sixty miles back. I spent SIX YEARS as the punching bag for SSA management. I spent six years watching my career go down the tubes because I dared to question why CalWin was rigged with multiple billing numbers for nursing homes, the same homes that were sued for dropping elderly patients on their heads. I fought and got back money for families of patients, money stolen by these nursing homes. I stood up for what was right, and reached out to manager after manager, to the DA, the Grand Jury and the BoS. All I got out of it was an ulcer, the destruction of my career and sandbagging me so I cannot get a job anywhere else. I am here, alone in my fight, because no one had the courage to speak. No one had the basic humanity to help me. No one cared about the embezzlement and fraud, or that patients could not be buried, even. Oh, right, I remember them calling these patients “Bean Bags”, that they were just disposable. I played by the rules, and lost. I did the right thing and lost everything. So, puhleeze, spare me the crocodile tears. I still stand alone, because no attorney has the guts, no DA, no Grand Jury, no one…no one. The only decent human being in all of this was the attorney hired by the County. So forgive me for my :”anger not serving me well”, sweetie. But I served my clients well, I served my ultimate employers, the taxpayers well. I gave everything for them. I have every right to be angry, and I have every right to call out each and every coward employee of this county that stands by and does nothing. Cowards…all of you.

        • OCservant_Leader

          No employee of the OC is safe…even if you stay quiet…you will just be used as a Patsy.

  • This has been known for quite sometime. I’m glad the money in reserve has been brought to everyone’s attention. The Behavioral Health Department will argue that the monies can only be spent “a certain way”, so much for this “box or that box” and/or it cant be used supplement our annual funds for inpatient and outpatient services. Well that just not true. The Mental Health directors have established “guidelines” for budgeting MHSA money and how it should be assigned (to children, adolescents, adults and the elderly), but these are just that>>guidelines. They are not laws! Orange County can choose to supplement inpatient care with MHSA money or help cities pay for CIT training. As Stephen Mayberg, past Director of our state Mental Health Department stated, its YOUR money-you are free to use it anyway you wish! and exactly as you see fit in your county.

  • Paul Lucas

    Unfortunately par for the course.

  • RITCHIE VALENS

    So is the money going to be kept stashed away? or are we actually going to use the funds to provide not just more psychiatrists to the outpatient mental health clinics but also strategically located, stand-alone, drop-off psychiatric emergency stabilization facilities with medical treatment capability at convenient locations throughout the County? So what’s going to happened? continue to schedule patients 3 months before they see a psychiatrist. I also feel sad for those in the civic center area here in santa ana who are homeless and many suffer from mental illness’s. The most sad part is that those who aren’t mentally ill and are homeless and can’t get the help they need like providing resources to clinics, shelters, any type of service that better’s that person’s life. It’s a sad cycle, it can happen to any of us.

  • CitizensForAnimalShelterOC

    A similar situation exists at the county animal shelter. The county does not pay the veterinarians sufficient wages to keep them on site so have had to contract for these services. In addition, the Health Care Agency and Environmental Health do not have regulatory oversight of OC Animal Care. Advocates have asked for an independent over site committee .In the interest of transparency in government and 5 OC Grand Jury Reports, the BOS response must be YES and as soon as possible!

  • David Zenger

    I think the solution to this problem is a loaded gun and some handcuffs.

    Just sayin.’

    • Judy Allen

      To use on the Supervisors or on the mentally ill?

      • David Zenger

        That’s up to Todd.

      • Jacki Livingston

        Is that a trick question?

    • Kathleen Tahilramani

      Ironic that in 2013 Spitzer noted that the funds should be expended on services for the mentally ill. After his Wahoo’s fiasco he might want to get in line for an appointment.

      • David Zenger

        Yes, he certainly seems to qualify for assistance. Plus he’s armed and dangerous.

        • John Claxton

          His wife the workers comp Judge will see that he gets a heft payout.

    • Someday Mr Zenger, you will understand that mental illnesses are brain disorders-especially the illness of schizophrenia. Mental health “issues”-such as stress and anger are NOT illnesses anymore than being 10#’s over weight is an illness-its a physical “health” issue. Our federal government is behind in reclassifying these illnesses as no fault brain disorders-that were acquired genetically and/or from a chemical, electrical, or structural brain abnormality. Brain illness doesn’t just happen up to age 18 (as with Autism), then skip to age 65 with Alzheimer’s. Did you know, Autism use to be called “childhood schizophrenia” and was under the diagnosis of schizophrenia? They are very similar disorders, which is why research for both disorders is typically done simultaneously. Our federal government has neglected to treat brain/mental illness within the ages of 18-65. They have been left to misinterpreted/misapplied Mental Health laws and Behavioral Health science, policy and philosophy-much of which is outside of their scope of practice and surrounds a “substance abuse mentality”. The goal is to integrate behavioral health services with primary care-so patients suffering these brain disorders have better medical management. We have ignored the primary, unstable brain biology for mental illness (which is the same for brain disorders labeled “physical”) and have only focused on the secondary behaviors-to decide if any medical intervention is necessary. If we did this with our Autism an/or Alzheimers patients, they would also be public nuisances, homeless, incarcerated and/or dead. Those that lack capacity to self direct their care or understand their need for care (again think of an Alzheimer s patient knowing if they have Alzheimer’s) need an assigned responsible party, and be cared for as any other dependent adult with a disability. As a nation, we have an obligation to take care of the less fortunate, those who are unable to care for themselves…again please dont mistake “mental health” issues with an ILLNESS of the brain. Most people do.

      • David Zenger

        Sorry, but I think the notion of a man who took a gun and handcuffs into a restaurant to deal with an annoyance, and who then pontificates about mental health issues is pretty darn ironic.

        And you are right. It really isn’t a joke when you get right down to it.

        • If we all put our energy into finding common ground rather than tearing each other down, our county would be a lot better off. Just saying.

          • David Zenger

            The current County HCA seems to be run for the benefit of the bureaucrats and the politicians more than anybody who needs help. MHSA stuff, too. Prop 63 revenue seemed like a cash cow.

            And I assure you that is an observation gained from really close scrutiny.

            However, if you can find common ground, go for it.

          • OCservant_Leader

            BINGO! I guess pumping 100 EAs into the Agency didn’t get the results the Board was hoping for…

          • OCservant_Leader

            How many EAs are there at HCA and how many positions for politicos is funded by the $100M per year Cash Cow?