Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California on March 9, 2004 · Page 10
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Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California · Page 10

Ukiah, California
Issue Date:
Tuesday, March 9, 2004
Page 10
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10 - TUESDAY, MARCH 9, 2004 LOCAL THE UKIAH DAILY JOURNAL County Continued from Page 1 - and she proposed to cut back the crisis services to one crisis worker and one human services worker after hours to do evaluations on psychiatric hospitalizations. Under Martinez's proposal the county's mental health workers would no longer respond to crisis intervention after hours at the jail or at Howard Hospital in Willits, but only at UVMC. Another $210,000 would be saved with the elimination of three clinical services workers (who would likely be transferred to a fully funded program serving children). Martinez also proposes to reduce staffing to the jail from two to one full time nurse and cut psychiatrist visits to 10 hours a week which - with additional funding from the Sheriff's Department toward jail mental health services should save the Mental Health Department another $125,000 a year. Further cuts would be made by eliminating positions now vacant and reassigning staff to fully funding programs saving another $375,000 annually. Reductions in coast services, some clerical work and reducing the number of people the county takes on as conservator - which costs $45,000 a year each for people who can no longer make day to day decisions on their own should bring the deficit down further, Martinez says. Local mental health advocates say they are concerned about reductions in medical and crisis services for the mentally ill and will suggest to the county board a number of possibilities including increased use of local clinics when the county department is closed, saving money on medications by using a Canadian drug source, moving to decrease duplication of services between Mental Health and the Social Services departments, and creating self-help support groups around the county. According to local advocate Sonja Nesch of the National Alliance for the Mentally 111, the county could find it is being penny wise and pound foolish by cutting local services too much and sending more people into hospitalization (which is expensive and traumatic and the county still has to pay for it). The county union - which is also concerned with the proposal - is scheduled to meet this week to discuss it. Fire Continued from Page I smoke and heat damage, said Redwood Valley-Calpella Fire Chief Tom Hession. Carl said the family was able to salvage silverware, dishes and some photographs, but lost irreplaceable possessions like their book collection and collages he and his wife had posted in a hallway with photos of their son, a Ukiah High School student. "We lost it all basically," Carl said. Since the fire, the family stayed with Thies, who said she took in the family because she had an extra room, space for the puppies and because it was "the natural thing to do." "They're going to have to start over from scratch," Thies said. That Saturday, Vina had brought the 11 puppies to Santa Rosa where she was showcasing them to potential buyers. The family received food and clothing stipends from the Red Cross of Mendocino County and money donations from other neighbors. They are now going to stay with relatives and look for a home to rent over the next few months before their destroyed home is replaced, Carl said. Redwood Valley-Calpella Fire District is investigating the incident. The district did not want to release any info pending completion of the investigation, but said the fire appeared not to be intentionally or due to illegal activities. Ukiah Ambulance and a California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection engine from Ukiah Valley Fire District also responded. 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