The 2022-23 Budget Agreement

Summary of Provisions Impacting Programs Serving Persons with Disabilities
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The 2022-23 Budget Agreement

Governor Gavin Newsom has signed the California budget for 2023. The 2022-23 budget includes total spending of over $300 billion with a focus on schools, addressing climate change and wildfires, and providing relief to low-income families and individuals. A summary of the enacted budget can be found at

California and the country continue to attempt to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the new challenges that we are facing is global inflation being impacted by Russia’s war with Ukraine. As a country, the Supreme Court has made the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, which protected reproductive rights. The Court has also made major decisions impacting the First Amendment, Second Amendment and other important rights that impact all people, including those with disabilities. California continues to be a leader on these issues in an attempt to ensure that all people’s rights will be protected in this state.

The enacted budget acknowledged a rise in the number of unhoused individuals in California. The state allocated $12 billion in services for the unhoused last year and is following that up with nearly $2 billion this year. Part of the state budget will fund the Community Assistance, Recovery and Empowerment (CARE) Court process, a major policy focus for Governor Newsom. Disability Rights California (DRC) continues to oppose CARE Court since disabled people, especially disabled people of color, are acutely impacted. The policy will also harm people with mental health disabilities because evidence does not support forced treatment, and the experience of court itself adds trauma. DRC is committed to supporting proposals that foster intensive community engagement with housing and voluntary services.

The state continues to prioritize the response to the COVID-19 pandemic and adds $1.8 billion to continue implementing the Administration’s SMARTER plan. This includes additional funding to support school testing, increase vaccination rates, and expand and sustain efforts to protect public health at the border.

The Governor’s budget approves record levels of per-pupil spending in the state’s K-12 system, with similar increases for special education programs. With DRC’s advocacy, the Governor included funding to ensure distance learning programs are accessible to pupils with disabilities. The budget also prioritizes funding for behavioral health services for students by including $290 million over three years to address urgent needs in children’s mental health.

DRC also advocated in the budget process to have more funding for people with intellectual and developmental services. This includes Fair Hearing Reform, which has been a yearlong project for DRC and a coalition of other organizations.  DRC will continue to advocate in the budget process to ensure that disabled people are at the table and prioritized by the state.

The following are some of the key items in the final budget agreement impacting persons with disabilities and the programs that assist them:

Table of Contents:


Provides roughly $36.3 million General Fund to continue implementation of the Master Plan for Aging. Also includes funding for Home and Community-Based Services infrastructure planning and $10 million for a Community Living Fund to assist older adults and persons with disabilities in transitioning from nursing homes to independent living.

Department of Developmental Services (DDS)

  • Coordinated Family Support Services Pilot Program - $25M enhanced federal funding ($42M TF); One-time, $25M GF ongoing. Requires the department to establish a pilot program for providing supported living-like services to adults with developmental disabilities who reside in the family home.
  • Fair Hearing Reform - $4.4 million ongoing ($3.7 million General Fund). Improves access to justice by making it easier for people served by regional centers to participate in the fair hearing process without an attorney. Prohibits regional centers from using attorneys at hearings unless the consumer has an attorney. Promotes the use of mediation to resolve disputes. Requires regional centers to describe their position more clearly in writing. Reduces the administrative burden required to prepare for the hearing for consumers representing themselves. Requires hearing officers to help unrepresented consumers bring out all relevant facts. Establishes new processes for the Department of Developmental Services to follow up if a regional center is not implementing a hearing decision, and for hearing decisions to be reconsidered if the hearing officer makes a legal or factual mistake. Requires additional hearing officer training regarding accommodations to facilitate the ability of people with intellectual/developmental disabilities to participate in hearing proceedings.  Establishes a stakeholder advisory committee that includes people served by regional centers and family members to make recommendations for improvements to the hearing process.
  • Acceleration of Rate Increases for Service Providers - $263.7 million ($159.2 million General Fund) in 2022-23. The Budget also includes $55.3 million ($34.1 million General Fund) in 2023-24 and $888.7 million ($534.1 million General Fund) in 2024-25. Accelerates the timeline for rate increases approved in the 2021 Budget Act so that the next step in the rate increase schedule is implemented on January 1, 2023, instead of July 1, 2023. Requires the fully funded rate models to be implemented by July 1, 2024. Details legislative intent that the majority of specified rate increases be used to enhance wages and benefits for staff members spending a minimum of 75 percent of their time providing direct services. Beginning July 1, 2023, would require a vendor to be in compliance with the federal home and community-based services final rule, or implementing a corrective action plan, to be eligible for a quality incentive program.
  • Family Cost Participation Program and Family Fees - Suspends existing and new assessments and reassessments, and collections of the annual family program fee. Also requires the department to submit a report to the Legislature by February 10, 2023, to revise the Family Cost Participation Program and the annual family program fee.
  • Service Coordinator Ratios - Requires specific service coordinator-to-consumer caseload ratios, including a ratio of 1 to 40 for consumers five years old or younger.
  • Remote Meetings - Extends ability to conduct meetings regarding regional center services and supports, including an individual program plan meeting, virtually through June 30, 2023.
  • Early Start Eligibility - $6.5 million General Fund in 2022-23, increasing to $29.5 million General Fund ongoing in 2024-25. Clarifies that fetal alcohol syndrome is a condition with established harmful developmental consequences for purposes of eligibility for the Early Start Program. Changes eligibility requirements to allow infants and toddlers with developmental delays in expressive and receptive communication development to be eligible for the Early Start program.
  • Workforce Stabilization - $185.3 million one-time General Fund. Establishes several workforce stabilization programs including a program to provide training stipends to direct support professionals, an entry-level training and internship program for individuals interested in becoming direct support professionals, and a program to provide tuition reimbursements to regional center employees seeking a degree or certification in a health or human services field. Requires internships to be made available no later than June 1, 2023. Allows tuition reimbursement for regional center employees to be available for the 2022-23 through 2024-25 fiscal years. Requires the department to seek input from stakeholders to develop the programs.
  • Remote Services and Supports Pilot Project - $5 million General Fund. Requires the Department to develop a pilot project to test the feasibility of remote consumer services and supports that use technology solutions. Also requires the department to report to the Legislature during quarterly briefings on the progress of this pilot and to submit a final evaluation report to the Legislature no later than January 10, 2026.
  • Safety Net Plan - Requires the Department to update its safety net plan by January 10, 2023. Requires the plan to evaluate the department’s progress in creating a safety net to reduce the state’s reliance on highly restrictive services and settings, provide data on special incidents involving restraints, and provide information on the Department’s strategic planning process. Also requires the Department to provide quarterly updates to the appropriate fiscal and policy committees on the Legislature and to make quarterly updates to the plan on its internet website.
  • Tailored Day Services - Allows individuals served by regional centers to receive tailored day services—a highly individualized service for providing employment, postsecondary education, community integration, and/or self-advocacy supports—in addition to traditional employment, day program, or work activity programs. Allows vendors who provided tailored day services as of June 2022 to maintain their previous hourly rates, and establishes a formula for calculating the hourly rate for providers newly vendorized to provide tailored day services options beginning July 1, 2022. Requires the department to review, in coordination with stakeholders, the implementation of the new rate and recommendations on modifying the scope of the service or establishing a rate model specific to the services. Requires the department to provide an update to the Legislature no later than January 10, 2024.
  • Work Activity Pilot - $8.3 million one-time ($5 million General Fund). Requires the Department to establish a three-year pilot program that focuses on competitive integrated employment, postsecondary education, and career readiness for individuals exiting work activity programs or secondary education. Requires the Department to develop the pilot in consultation with stakeholders.
  • Financial Management Services Cost for the Self-Determination Program - $7.2 million ongoing ($4.4 million General Fund). Requires regional centers to pay the full costs of a Self-Determination Program participant’s financial management services provider.
  • Service Access and Equity Grant Program - $11 million one-time General Fund in 2022-23 to increase the resources currently available for the Service Access and Equity Grant Program, which focuses on supporting strategies to reduce disparities and increase equity in regional center services.

Department of State Hospitals (DSH)

Incompetent to Stand Trial

The final budget includes $535.5 million General Fund for 2022-23 as well as ongoing DSH funding for the IST population. The funding is intended to establish 5,000 beds over four years for felony ISTs.

Los Angeles County Justice-Involved Population Services and Supports

The budget includes $100 million General Fund to support and expand access to treatment for justice-involved individuals with behavioral health disorders. $50 million of this amount is intended for individuals charged with a misdemeanor and found incompetent to stand trial.

Diversity in State Employment

The final budget approved the Governor’s January proposal aimed to provide 43 permanent positions and $7.6 million in 202223 and $6.8 million ongoing for the Department of Human Resources (CalHR) to implement specific proposals recommended by a taskforce established by the Governor aimed at finding ways to make the state a better employer. These proposals include reducing barriers to state employment for people with disabilities. The final budget also directs CalHR to collect data pertaining to ethnic origin of African American Employees to ensure upward mobility in the state civil service.

Work Activity Programs: New Service Model—$8.3 million was allocated one-time to establish a service model pilot program focused on expanding career preparedness for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities who are currently served through Work Activity Programs or are recent high school graduates.



The Budget invests $312.7 million Proposition 98 General Fund and $172.3 million General Fund to increase State Preschool Program adjustment factors for students with disabilities, dual language learners, and childhood mental health and adds an adjustment factor for three-year-olds.

Additionally, the Budget enables all students participating in State Preschool to maintain continuous eligibility for 24 months (increased from 12 months) after eligibility is confirmed, enables children with an individualized education program to be categorically eligible to participate in State Preschool, and expands access to eligible families from families at 85 percent of the state median income to families at 100 percent of the state median income for California State Preschool.

Finally, the Budget includes $100.5 million to develop and renovate child care facilities, includes adjustment factor updates for the State Preschool program to reshape this program to serve three-year-olds and children with disabilities, and temporarily extends family fee waivers and reimburses subsidized child care and state preschool providers based on maximum authorized care.

K-12 Education

The Budget includes total funding of $128.6 billion for K-12 education, reflecting $22,893 per pupil. In addition to this funding, the Budget includes $5.1 billion General Fund for K-12 school facilities, including new preschool and transitional kindergarten facilities. The final budget approved the 2022-23 cost-of-living adjustment updated to 6.56 percent.

  • Early Literacy
    The final budget approved $250 million for training grants for literacy programs. This is an increase from the $15 million one-time requested in the May Revision to support teachers in completing the coursework necessary to receive a supplementary state certification in reading and literacy.
  • Afterschool Programs
    The Budget provides $148.7 million one-time General Fund to maintain reimbursement rate increases from the 2021 Budget Act for the After-School Education and Safety and 21st Century Community Learning Centers programs in fiscal year 2022-23.
  • Dyslexia Screening
    The final budget approved an increase of $10 million one-time General Fund to support the University of California San Francisco Dyslexia Center. This funding was first requested in the Governor’s January Budget proposal.
  • Special Education
    The approved budget provides $500 million ongoing for the special education funding formula, and makes several policy changes to further the state’s commitment to improving special education instruction and services.

    Early Start: Part C to B Transitions—$65.5 million, increasing to $82.5 million ongoing in 2023-24, to strengthen support for families navigating the transition process for children with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities moving from the Early Start program (Part C of the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)) to special education (or from Part C to Part B of IDEA). This funding supports reduced service coordinator-to-child caseload ratios, initiatives for preschools to increase inclusion of children served by regional centers, establishment of IDEA specialists at each regional center, and resources to facilitate interagency coordination.

    $35 million was approved over three years for teacher development in the fields of special education and support for English Learners, an increase of $20 million above the request made in the May Revision.

    Inclusion in Distance Learning – As part of a legal settlement with disability advocates, the Governor’s office has agreed to support new legislative amendments to ensure that special education students have equal access to their education through virtual learning. Last year, many students were denied virtual instruction through Independent Study, solely because of their disabilities. If approved by the Legislature, the new protections will go into effect for the 2022-23 school year, ensuring that special education students can qualify for virtual instruction in the future if new COVID-19 variants emerge.

    Inclusive Early Education Expansion Program—$250 million one-time Proposition 98 General Fund to support the Inclusive Early Education Expansion Program, which funds infrastructure necessary to support general education and special education students in inclusive classrooms.

Higher Education

  • University of California
    The budget continues implementation of a multi-year compact between the Newsom Administration and the UC, CSU, and Community College campuses. The compact will improve data collection on graduation rates for students with a disability and creating a dashboard for this information by the end of the 2025-26 academic year. This information will be used to aid in establishing baseline data and identification of appropriate metrics and goals to improve the student experience for disabled students.
  • California State University
    The final budget approved an increase of $1.5 million General Fund to support First Star Foster Youth Cohorts at CSU East Bay and CSU Northridge.

    CSU Multi-Year Compact with Newsom Administration: The budget continues funding for the CSU to compile reliable baseline data for the graduation rates of first-time students with a disability and will include this information in the November 2022 annual report. The CSU will use this baseline data to establish metrics that seek to close any equity gap between disabled students and their peers by 2030, which will be included in the November 2023 annual report.
  • California Community Colleges
    The final budget provided the following investments to help eliminate equity gaps for underrepresented and disabled students.

    Hire UP Pilot Program—An increase of $30 million one-time to establish the Hire UP Pilot Program to provide stipends to formerly incarcerated individuals, CalWORKs recipients, and former foster youth.

    Native American Student Support and Success Program—An increase of $30 million to establish the Native American Student Support and Success Program at up to 20 colleges.

    Foster Youth Support Services—An increase of $30 million ongoing to expand availability of foster youth support services offered by theNextUp program.

    Hunger and Homelessness Initiatives—An increase of $10 million ongoing to increase funds available for CCC basic needs centers, and $10 million ongoing to increase funds available for rapid rehousing programs.

    CCC Multi-Year Compact with Newsom Administration—The budget ensures the CCC will provide a 2023 annual report detailing graduation rates and other statistics, disaggregated to reflect underrepresented students, Pell Grant recipients, and disabled students.

Emergency Response


The Budget allocates $4.3 billion and includes critical actions to allow the state to provide reliability insurance through the development of a strategic reserve, protection to ratepayers, and accelerated deployment of clean energy projects. The Budget also includes an additional $3.8 billion that is deferred for allocation later this summer to further reliability, affordability, and accelerate the state’s clean energy future.


The Budget includes $1.2 billion in additional actions to continue building forest and wildfire resilience statewide, including $530 million that will be allocated in the summer pending additional discussions with the Legislature. The Budget also includes significant new CAL FIRE staffing and fire protection operational enhancements to expand the state's wildfire response capacity. The additional $671.4 million ($662.9 million General Fund) will add 1,265 new positions and expand fire crews, air attack operations, and provide for additional relief for CAL FIRE staff to meet the demands of wildland firefighting in a changing climate.

Health and Human Services


The SMARTER (Shots, Masks, Awareness, Readiness, Testing, Education and Rx.) Plan and the Next Phase COVID-19—Approves $1.8 billion one-time California Emergency Relief Fund to continue to respond to the pandemic as well as provide a roadmap for ongoing emergency preparedness.


Better for Families Tax Refund: The budget includes funding to provide low- and middle-income California taxpayers with a one-time payment between $350 and $1,050, with the amount of the payment depending on their income and number of dependents.

Medi-Cal Share of Cost Reform: The final Budget approves reforming the Medi-Cal Share of Cost program’s maintenance need income level to 138% of the federal poverty level, beginning January 1, 2025 subject to a budget appropriation.

Medi-Cal Coverage to All Income-Eligible Californians: The final budget includes $835.6 million ($626.1 million General Fund) in 2023-24 and $2.6 billion ($2.1 billion General Fund) at full implementation and annually thereafter, inclusive of In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) costs, to expand full-scope eligibility to all income-eligible adults aged 26 through 49 regardless of immigration status. The budget approves funding to expand fullscope Medi-Cal to all income-eligible Californians, regardless of age or immigration status, starting January 1, 2024.

California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM) Initiative: $3.1 billion ($1.2 billion General Fund) in 2022-23 and an estimated $1.9 billion ($698.5 million General Fund) in 2024-25 to continue the implementation of the CalAIM initiative.

Medi-Cal Community-Based Mobile Crisis Intervention Services: $1.4 billion ($335 million General Fund) over five-years to add qualifying community-based mobile crisis intervention services no sooner than January 1, 2023 as a Medi-Cal covered benefit through the Medi-Cal behavioral health delivery system.

Reduce Premiums to Zero: The Budget includes $53.3 million total funds ($19.7 million General Fund) to reduce premiums to zero for programs under the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and the 250 Percent of Federal Poverty Level Working Disabled Program.

Homelessness and Housing

The enacted Budget provides $150 million for additional spending to homelessness services and CARE Court. The Governor requested $500 million in the May Revision, and the Legislature approved $150 million in the final Budget. In total, $11.2 billion is dedicated to housing resources, and $10.2 billion for homelessness services.

Project Homekey

The enacted Budget approved an additional $150 million in the current year, for a total of $2.9 billion in Homekey funding over two years, consistent with what was requested in the May Revision.

Behavioral Health Bridge Housing Program

The enacted budget includes $1.5 billion General Fund over two years for additional housing and treatment supports to those with behavioral health needs.


The enacted budget provides $700 million for Encampment Resolution Grants through 2024. $150 million is allocated specifically to interact with persons living in encampments located on a state right-of-way.

Utility and Rent Relief

The final budget approved $1.2 billion to reduce or eliminate past due energy bill balances accrued by customers economically impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS)

IHSS Permanent Backup Provider System— the final budget includes $34.4 million ($15.4 million General Fund) ongoing to establish a permanent back-up provider system for IHSS recipients to avoid disruptions to caregiving due to an immediate need or emergency and to provide a $2 wage differential for backup providers.

Mental Health

CARE (Community Assistance Recovery and Empowerment) Court

In March of this year, the Governor released a framework for CARE Court, a court-ordered mental health treatment program. The Governor’s proposal is contained in a bill (SB 1338 (Umberg and Eggman)) and the Final Budget includes $64.7 million in funding for implementation, contingent on enactment of the policy bill. Of this amount, $39.5 million goes to the Judicial Branch for hearings and resources and $15.2 million goes to the Department of Health Care Services for technical assistance and training. An additional $10 million is allocated to the Department of Aging for a Supporter program. This program has been taken out of SB 1338 and it is unclear whether the bill, which is still in progress, will be revised in a way that would make use of these funds.

Opioid Response

The Final Budget approves $26 million in on-time funding from Opioid Settlement Funds for substance use disorder workforce training along with $14.75 million for distribution of naloxone to providers and organizations addressing the needs of unhoused people. $4 million is allocated to the Department of Rehabilitation for training behavioral health providers serving people with disabilities with substance use disorders related to opioid use.

Children’s Behavioral Health

The final Budget includes an additional $290 million over three years for suicide prevention and wellness programs:

$175 million for the Department of Health Care Services to provide wellness and resilience building supports for children, youth, and parents, support the School-Based Peer Mental Health Demonstration project, develop a video series to provide parents with resources and skills to support their children’s mental health, and to develop next generation digital supports for remote mental health assessment and intervention. $50 million to provide grants to pilot school and community-based crisis response and supports following a youth suicide or youth suicide attempt and pilot a new approach of designating youth suicide and youth suicide attempts as a reportable public health event.

$25 million to identify and support the early career development of 2,500 highly talented and culturally diverse high school students interested in mental health careers.

Juvenile Justice

The Budget includes $100 million one-time General Fund to support improvements to county-operated juvenile facilities to make these locations more conducive to serving justice-involved youth with a wide range of needs, with a focus on providing therapeutic, youth-centered, trauma-informed, and developmentally appropriate rehabilitative environments for youth. $10 million in ongoing funding will go to the Office of Youth and Community Restoration to support activities for the purpose of transforming the juvenile justice system to improve outcomes for justice involved youth.

Supplemental Security Income/State Supplemental Program

The federal SSI program provides a monthly cash benefit to individuals with disabilities, including children, and adults aged 65 or older who meet the program’s income and resource requirements. In California, the SSI payment is augmented with an SSP grant. These cash grants help recipients meet their basic needs and living expenses.

Supplemental Security Income/State Supplementary Payment (SSI/SSP) Increase: $150 million General Fund in both 2022-23 and 2023-24 for an SSP increase effective January 1, 2023. The Budget assumes an additional $296 million General Fund in 2023-24 and $593 million ongoing General Fund for an additional increase beginning January 1, 2024.


The enacted budget includes $14.8 billion for regional transit and rail projects; to support the continued development of a first-in-the-nation, electrified high-speed rail system in California; bicycle and pedestrian projects; and climate adaptation projects, with a focus on aligning the state's transportation system with its climate goals. The Budget also includes $6.1 billion (General Fund, Proposition 98 General Fund, federal funds, and Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund) over five years for zero-emission vehicles, which builds on last year's unprecedented zero-emission package, for a total of $10 billion to advance California's climate and transportation goals.