Legislative Analyst's Office

Analysis of the 2002-03 Budget Bill

Department of Mental Health (4440)

The Department of Mental Health (DMH) operates four state hospitals Atascadero, Metropolitan, Napa, and Patton. As of December 2001, the system housed over 4,200 patients. The budget includes $736,000 from the General Fund and $20.8 million in lease-payment bonds for the department's 2002-03 capital outlay program. The estimated future cost to complete the proposed projects is $3.5 million. The budget includes the following proposals:

Previously Funded Projects

New Proposals

We recommend approval of $736,000 to upgrade the electrical generator plant and install a personal alarm system in the G, O, P, and T buildings at Patton State Hospital. The balance of the program, and our recommendations, are discussed below.

Projects Recommended for Approval Contingent on Review of Preliminary Plans

We recommend the Legislature approve $20.8 million to fund working drawings and construction for two projects contingent on receipt and review of preliminary plans consistent with prior legislative approval.

The Governor's budget includes funding requests for working drawings and/or construction of two continuing projects that total $20.8 million for which preliminary plans and/or working drawings were funded in the 2001-02 Budget Act (see Figure 1). The amounts included in the Governor's budget are consistent with the supplemental report language adopted by the Legislature and, pending completion of preliminary plans, should proceed. Therefore, we recommend the Legislature approve the requested amounts contingent on receipt and review of completed, or substantially completed, preliminary plans and cost estimates consistent with prior legislative approval.

Figure 1

Department of Mental Health
Projects Recommended for Approval
Contingent on Preliminary Plan Review

(In Thousands)


Project Description


Budget Amount

Scheduled Completion on Plans


Atascadero: Construct multipurpose building



June 2002


Metropolitan: Construct school building



March 2002






a   W = working drawings; C = construction


Return to Capital Outlay Table of Contents, 2002-03 Budget Analysis