The Commission for Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services (Commission) of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services was created in 1973 as part of the Executive Organization Act. Its creation, powers and duties are set forth, in part, in N.C.G.S. § 143B-147. Its mission is to promote excellence in prevention, treatment and rehabilitation programs for persons with mental illness, developmental disabilities and substance abuse disorders in North Carolina.
The Commission has the authority to adopt, amend and repeal rules to be used in the implementation of state and local mental health, developmental disability and substance abuse service programs. The Commission also has the authority to modify specific storage, security, transaction limits and record keeping requirements that apply to particular pseudoephedrine products.
History of the Commission
The Commission was established as part of the Executive Organization Act of 1973. That act is now set forth in North Carolina General Statute §143B-147. The Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Act of 1985 extended the powers and duties of the Commission in North Carolina General Statute §122C-26. Session Law 2001-437, House Bill 381, An Act to Phase in Implementation of Mental Health System Reform at the State and Local Level, commonly referred to as the Mental Health Reform Legislation, further amended the powers and duties of the Commission. Current versions of each statute referred to in the original legislation can be located via the General Statutes link on the North Carolina General Assembly's webpage.
Links to the statutes and Session Law described above are provided below.
N.C.G.S. § 143B-147
Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services Act of 1985
Session Law 2001-437, HB 381: Mental Health Reform Legislation
Commission Organization and Membership
Membership in the Commission is governed by North Carolina General Statute § 143B-148. By statute, there are 32 members of the Commission. Each member represents a specific appointment category identified in the statute and a congressional district of our state. The Governor appoints 24 members of the Commission while the General Assembly appoints the remaining eight. Of the appointees from the General Assembly, four appointments are made on the recommendation of the Speaker of the House and four on the recommendation of the President Pro Tempore of the Senate. The Governor appoints the Chair of the Commission. Commission members serve until their own terms expire and until those who will replace them have been appointed and have completed all requirements of the State Ethics Commission. The Commission roster reflects the current membership of the Commission as well as the appointing body, the appointment category, and, where known, the congressional district of each appointee.
The Commission established the Rules Committee as well as the Advisory Committee to carry out its two primary functions: rulemaking and serving in an advisory capacity to the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. Committee membership is comprised of current members of the Commission who are appointed to the committees by the Chair of the Commission.
Rules Committee Roster
Advisory Committe Roster
The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services provides staff support to the Commission. Support is provided by the Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services.
DMH/DD/SAS Staff Roster
Commission Rulemaking Process
- Rulemaking procedure is governed by North Carolina General Statutes Chapter 150B, the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).
- The NC Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Commission for Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services (Commission) are granted statutory authority to adopt rules related to the mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse service delivery system.
- The rulemaking process implemented by the Commission is outlined below.
- Legislation requires rulemaking and/or Commission decision to amend/repeal existing rule.
- DMH/DD/SAS Executive Leadership Team (ELT) assigns subject matter expert to generate content of proposed rule.
- Subject matter expert collaborates with Rulemaking Coordinator to develop rule language.
- Rule is presented to ELT for review and comment.
- Rule is presented to External Advisory Team for review and comment.
- If EAT recommends substantive changes to the rule, the rule is again reviewed by ELT.
- The Commission’s Rules Committee conducts initial review of the rule.
- Commission completes initial review of the rule and recommends publication of the rule in the NC Register.
- A fiscal note is prepared by the DMH/DD/SAS Budget Office to determine what financial impact, if any, will occur as a result of the rule action. If the fiscal analysis determines that the rule will create a financial impact of $500,000.00 or more per year, the Commission must review the note and consider at least two alternatives to the rule.
- The fiscal note is reviewed and approved by the Office of State Budget Management (OSBM), the DHHS, and the Commission.
- Proposed rule action is published in the NC Register for 60-day Public Comment Period.
- The Commission’s Rules Committee completes its final review of the rule, including comments on the rule and the fiscal note, for adoption.
- Commission completes its final review of the rule, including comments on the rule and the fiscal note, for adoption.
- The OSBM certifies the Commission has followed rulemaking requirements.
- Rule is presented to the Rules Review Commission (RRC) for final review. The RRC is established by N.C.G.S. Chapter 150B. The role of the RRC is to review all proposed rules and rule changes to ensure that the rules are clear and unambiguous, within the rulemaking authority delegated to the agency by the General Assembly, reasonably necessary to implement or interpret law, and adopted in accordance with the APA.
- Upon approval of the RRC, the rule is entered into the North Carolina Administrative Code.
- Flowchart for Rulemaking Process