Mental Health and Substance Abuse Block Grants

What are the Block Grants - How do they help States?

The Mental Health and Substance Abuse federal Block grant programs award funds to states to establish, expand or enhance an organized, community-based system for providing mental health services for adults with serious mental illness (SMI), children with serious emotional disturbances (SED), and adults and adolescents with or at risk for Substance Use Disorders (SUD). Funds awarded to the state are to be used to carry out the approved state plan, to evaluate programs and services set in place under the plan, and to conduct planning, administration and educational activities related to the provision of services under the plan. The CMH Services Block Grant accounts for approximately 5% of state expenditures of Community Mental Health. The SAPT block grant accounts for approximately 87% of state expenditures on substance abuse services.

Block Grant Application Structure and Format  

The State of Texas will submit an application to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) for Block Grant funding for the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2018-2019. The application will be combined for Community Mental Health (CMH) and Substance Abuse Treatment and Prevention (SAPT) services for youth and adults throughout the state’s 11 health and human services regions. While the application is being combined, block grant funding will remain separate. The block grant federal funds provide approximately $43 million dollars a year to Texas for the provision of CMH Services and approximately $145 million dollars for SAPT services.

As part of the block grant application process, the State of Texas is in the process of developing a biennial plan that aligns with SAMHSA’s Six Strategic Initiatives and the Texas Statewide Behavioral Health Strategic Plan. Addressing these priorities and meeting the goals and strategies is how the State of Texas intends to utilize block grant and required maintenance of effort funds. Public comment is being requested on these efforts.

Last updated July 18, 2017