... Mass. schools lacking on carbon monoxide detection ...... DeLeo wants another interim budget, a sign that fiscal 2020 budget accord not likely near ...... Mass. spending down its interim budget with House and Senate Dems locked in a quiet quarrel over annual budget ...... Harness racing, simulcast wagering sites at risk without extension of gaming laws due to expire July 31 ...... Budget impasse causes UMass to postpone decision on fall tuition and fee rates ...... Opponents of NU project in Nahant say it's time for a law overriding the Dover Amendment ...... Central Maine Power opponents say opposition growing in Maine to transmission project ...... Student transportation commission scheduled to meet on July 19 ...... ACLU sues MassDOT, alleges agency failed to respond to its face surveillance public records requests ...... Baker returns Janus bill with amendment designed to protect employee cellphone numbers ...... Transportation emission reductions will be focus of workshops July 18, July 23, July 25 ...
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By Chris Lisinski

STATE HOUSE, BOSTON, FEB. 6, 2019....One year after receiving a significant increase in state funds, the head of the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health hopes legislators will back Gov. Charlie Baker's proposal to keep the allocation at its higher level.

Mental Health Commissioner Joan Mikula said housing costs are holding back people in recovery who are ready to live on their own. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS]

State Mental Health Commissioner Joan Mikula, speaking before dozens of mental health providers at an annual breakfast Wednesday, said she was happy to see the governor's fiscal year 2020 budget maintain the same support for her department as last year, when an $876 million budget was approved. She urged attendees to visit lawmakers after the breakfast and advocate on DMH's behalf.

"The governor's fiscal year '20 budget supports initiatives and is a statement about the effectiveness of treatment, medication and services," she said. "It recognizes the importance of peer specialists and recovery coaches. It appreciates that many of the 29,000 individuals we serve have a lot of co-ocurring substance-abuse conditions. It acknowledges the crucial importance of high-quality, real-time medical intervention and treatment for people."

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