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At Wednesday evening’s meeting, the Board of Commissioners cemented Washtenaw County’s commitment to increasing and extending funding for human services in the community when they allocated $3.5 million to work supporting Washtenaw County residents. The funds include an expanded, long-term commitment to the New Human Services Partnership (NHSP), as well as additional allocations to maintain key social safety net funding for community partner agencies.
“Tonight, we as the Board clearly reaffirmed our commitment to funding the work of human service organizations,” said Sue Shink, Chair of the Board of Commissioners. “Moving forward, we will continue working to structurally fund the critical safety net services provided by our nonprofit partners in a way that’s data-driven and aligns with our racial equity goals.”
With passage of the first resolution, the Board accepted funding recommendations from the New Human Services Partnership (NHSP) community review board. The previously allocated $1.7M will be disbursed to seven service agencies as part the first round of NHSP funding, the Safety Net Service category.
The Board also approved an additional item prepared by County administration to address additional needs in safety net funding. $192K in annual structural funding, intended to increase funding in the two additional rounds of support in the form of High Impact Grants, and Mini Grants later this year, further increases the largest public contribution to social service agencies from Washtenaw County and the City of Ann Arbor in several years. The investment will come from new recreational marihuana tax revenue from the state of Michigan and brings the county’s contribution to the NHSP on par with that of the City of Ann Arbor.
“We are focused on innovative ways to continue to provide resources for our most vulnerable residents,” says County Administrator Gregory Dill. “This item represents our team’s best thinking and provides the Board the space and opportunity they need to explore more sustainable solutions. It’s our role to operationalize those solutions.”
The resolution also approves $1.5M in general fund dollars for safety net provider agency funding as part of a temporary extension for agencies that were not recommended for New Human Safety Net Services funding but previously received Coordinated Funding support.