Having voted on the prevailing side in the Pierce County Council’s rejection of a proposal to take stock of the county’s behavioral health system on Aug. 25, Councilmember Doug Richardson called for reconsideration at the Sept. 1 council meeting.
R2015-91 was originally proposed by Councilmembers Connie Ladenburg and Derek Young and would have directed the county’s Performance Audit Committee to conduct a thorough, countywide inventory of services in order to identify where gaps exist, what their impact on county services are, where investments should be made, and what success should look like. However, the measure was defeated on a 4-3 vote.
“There was certainly bipartisan support for the measure’s underlying intent, however I don’t think the proposal was quite in its best form when it came before the council last week,” said Ladenburg, who represents the 4th Council District. “So I’ve been working on amending the language to make acceptable to a majority of the council. In this new form, I’m confident the county can now proceed with this needed study which will hopefully reveal to us potential solutions to Pierce County’s behavioral health crisis.”
The amendment to R2015-91 affirms the council will engage the services of an independent consultant to conduct the study sometime in 2015, and asks the county executive to include funding for the study in her 2016 budget proposal.
“We said last week that this was a vitally important issue to Pierce County and we wouldn’t give up on it that easily,” Ladenburg added, “and we didn’t.”
Ladenburg’s proposal – upon reconsideration – was approved 6-1.