Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas Welcome to the Official Website for the Texas Senate
Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas
Welcome to the official website for the
Texas Senate
Senator Jane Nelson: District 12
February 18, 2015
Contact: Megan Hanson

On the agenda: Article II

  • Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC)
  • Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS)
  • Department of State Health Services (DSHS)
  • Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS)
  • Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS)

For the full agenda, please view the posting online


  • Today the Senate Finance Committee will discuss Article II, the state's health and human services budget.
  • Overall, SB 2 increases Article II funding from $74.5 billion in 2014-2015 to $74.9 billion in 2016-2017 -- an increase of $384.1 million (All Funds).
  • SB 2 increases Medicaid funding by $1.2 billion All Funds, which includes caseload growth through FY 17.
  • SB 2 increases funding for women's health by $50M over the 2014-15 budget, which included an increase of $113M from 2012-13.
    • Statement from Senator Nelson: "Our goal with these additional resources is to establish a cohesive women's health network that provides critical preventive services to the most women possible," Senator Nelson said.
  • SB 2 includes $2.6B in GR for mental health programs across the state budget. This includes:
    • $12M for the 1915i waiver to divert frequent visitors of our jails and emergency rooms into community treatment in partnership with local entities.
    • $34.3M for mental health services specifically for veterans, including $3M at the Veterans Commission; $20M at the Health and Human Services Commission for the Texas Veterans Initiative; $10M for peer-to-peer counseling at the Department of State Health Services; and funding for two additional mental health counselors at the Texas Military Department.
    • An additional $18.4M for crisis mental health services.
    • An additional $14.5M to keep waiting lists at zero through the 16-17 budget cycle.
    • Under Article IX, Sec. 10.04, SB 2 directs state agencies that receive mental health funding to formulate a statewide strategic plan to better coordinate mental health programs across state government.
    • Statement from Senator Nelson: "SB 2 builds on the commitment we made to mental health last session. It expands programs for veterans, ensures that waiting lists end the budget cycle at zero, and explores new ways to divert patients away from our jails and emergency rooms and into community treatment. By insisting on a strategic vision across state government, we will fund mental health programs that work. "
  • SB 2 funds an additional 90 caseworkers at DFPS to maintain FY15 average daily caseloads.

To watch the Senate Finance Committee hearing online, click here.

Senator Jane Nelson
Chair, Senate Finance Committee