Council Legislation

Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-24s

Title: An Ordinance of the Pierce County Council Amending Chapter 2.51 of the Pierce County Code, "Chemical Dependency Advisory Board," to Replace the Chemical Dependency Advisory Board with the Newly Created Behavioral Health Coordinating Commission; Amending Chapter 4.28 of the Pierce County Code, "Sales and Use Tax"; Amending Section 4.48.020 of the Pierce County Code, "Special Revenue Funds"; Authorizing the Levy and Collection of an Additional Sales and Use Tax of One-Tenth of One Percent for Behavioral Health and Therapeutic Courts; Providing for Allocation and Use of Taxes Received; Making Declarations and Findings Related to Behavioral Health Disorders and Establishing County Goals and Priorities; Providing for Administration of Taxes Collected; Prescribing Violations and Penalties; Directing Tax Collection to Begin at the Earliest Date Consistent with Revised Code of Washington 82.14.055; Adopting a Planning Framework for the Behavioral Health Coordinating Commission; and Establishing a Sunset Date. (Sale

Status: Postponed Indefinitely

Sponsors: Councilmembers Connie Ladenburg, Derek Young, Marty Campbell

Final votes

March 10, 2020
Aye Aye Aye Nay Nay Aye Nay

Additional legislative records are available below Collapse All  Expand All

Public Comments

Name Date Comment
Nora E Sekowski 2/15/20 12:16 PM Please support this vital legislation that will greatly benefit our community!
Julie Hemminger 2/18/20 9:38 AM This tax is greatly needed!
Jenn Romo 2/27/20 12:07 PM Access to mental health services is crucial! Additional funding for these services decreases the costs of other services like foster care and public safety. Please find.
Justin Teerlinck 3/10/20 12:27 PM Honorable Pierce County Council Members, On the grounds of Western State Hospital there are four cottages that preserve the artifacts of people’s lives from the heyday of old Fort Steilacoom. These cottages are empty most of the year. Right next door there are patients who can live in the community with the help of supportive services, yet they remain under lock and key simply because they have nowhere else to go. Is it not ironic that we honor the memory of the dead from a hundred years passed, while the forgotten living suffer in silence just a few feet away? Is it not ironic that we preserve the housing of our ancestors while our present and future community members have none? Therefore, I urge you to support Proposal 2020-24. Not only will this proposal help secure badly needed funding, it will provide vision, direction and oversight for behavioral health services in Pierce County. Until the cycle of poverty is broken, until proactive and preventative services are in place, people with mental health issues will continue to require emergency inpatient and crisis-based services. These services are costly, short-term solutions that do not address long-term issues or contribute to stable, healthy communities. As a former department head at Western State Hospital and Wellfound Hospital, I can attest that a lack of housing options and community behavioral health services contributes to repeated hospitalizations. The most cost-effective and pragmatic approach is also the most compassionate: support people with mental illness by helping them remain healthy in our communities. Provide them not only with psychiatric crisis services, but social services such as job development, rehabilitation and housing support. Provide them increased access to primary behavioral health care. I respectfully but strenuously urge you to pass Proposal 2020-24 to create lasting, positive change in our community, and to help our most vulnerable citizens. People with mental health challenges are a part of society, they are not the "other." They are our families and our neighbors. Please take this step forward in a new direction for creating hope, health and wellness. Let history show that we did the right thing. Thank you for your time and consideration. Respectfully, Justin Teerlinck, MOTR/L Teerlinck Health Services
Mary 10/28/20 3:40 PM Dear Councilmember Morell, My name is Mary Bol. I am a proud and concerned member of Pierce county. I live in Orting and am pursing my master’s degree in social work. I am writing you to urge you to support a 1/10th of 1% tax for behavioral health. Pierce county needs more support for behavioral health prevention, intervention, and crisis management. As a resident of Orting there are hardly any behavioral health resources available in close distance. Like many of the surrounding rural cities near Orting, resources for behavioral health are greatly needed. Investing in behavioral health through this tax will support kids, families, and our community. It will reduce 911 calls and emergency hospitalizations that could be avoidable. This investment in support of a 1/10th of 1% tax for behavioral health will have a meaningful impact on our community. I strongly encourage you to support a 1/10th of 1% tax for behavioral health. Thank You Mary Bol
Bob Winslow 12/6/20 1:30 PM I have spoken often before Council supporting better (mental) health care for our neighbors. Given that, I urge all Council Members to vote NAY on Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-136. Passing Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-136 would reaffirm that the current council majority party members continue prioritizing their partisan supporters’ narrow issues above the broader subject of Pierce County residents’ health. This same majority tabled Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-24s under the guise of needing (another – different) plan. That new plan was presented to Council in November, but Council won’t be acting on this proposed ordinance. Now those council members want to pass Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-136 without any implementation plan or analysis of the consequences on health services delivery. Neither action makes rationale since in terms of good governance. Again, I urge all Council Members to vote NAY on Proposed Ordinance No. 2020-136.