122C-115.1. County governance and operation of mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services program.

(a) A county may operate a county program for mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services as a single county or, pursuant to Article 20 of Chapter 160A of the General Statutes, may enter into an interlocal agreement with one or more other counties for the operation of a multicounty program. An interlocal agreement shall provide for the following:

(1) Adoption and administration of the program budget in accordance with Chapter 159 of the General Statutes.

(2) Appointment of a program director to carry out the provisions of G.S. 122C-111 and duties and responsibilities delegated by the county. Except when specifically waived by the Secretary, the program director shall meet all the following minimum qualifications:

a. Masters degree.

b. Related experience.

c. Management experience.

d. Any other qualifications required under G.S. 122C-120.1.

(3) Repealed by Session Laws 2006-66, s. 10.32(e), effective July 1, 2007.

(4) Compliance with the provisions of this Chapter and the rules of the Commission and the Secretary.

(5) Written notification to the Secretary prior to the termination of the interlocal agreement.

(6) Appointment of an advisory committee. The interlocal agreement shall designate a county manager to whom the advisory committee shall report. The interlocal agreement shall also designate the appointing authorities. The appointing authorities shall make appointments that take into account sufficient citizen participation, equitable representation of the disability groups, and equitable representation of participating counties. The membership shall conform to the requirements provided in G.S. 122C-118.1.

(b) Before establishing a county program pursuant to this section, a county board of commissioners shall hold a public hearing with notice published at least 10 days before the hearing.

(c) A county shall ensure that the county program and the services provided through the county program comply with the provisions of this Chapter and the rules adopted by the Commission and the Secretary.

(d) A county program shall submit on a quarterly basis to the Secretary and the board of county commissioners service delivery reports that assess the quality and availability of public services within the county program's catchment area. The service delivery reports shall include the types of services delivered, number of recipients served, and services requested but not delivered due to staffing, financial, or other constraints. In addition, at least annually, a progress report shall be submitted to the Secretary and the board of county commissioners. The progress report shall include an assessment of the progress in implementing local service plans, goals, and outcomes. All reports shall be in a format and shall contain any additional information required by the Secretary or board of county commissioners.

(e) Within 30 days of the end of each quarter of the fiscal year, the program director and finance officer of the county program shall present to each member of the board of county commissioners a budgetary statement and balance sheet that details the assets, liabilities, and fund balance of the county program. This information shall be read into the minutes of the meeting at which it is presented. The program director or finance officer of the county program shall provide to the board of county commissioners ad hoc reports as requested by the board of county commissioners.

(f) In a single-county program, the program director shall be appointed by the county manager. In a multicounty program, the program director shall be appointed in accordance with the terms of the interlocal agreement.

Except when specifically waived by the Secretary, the program director in a single county program shall meet all the following minimum qualifications:

(1) Masters degree.

(2) Related experience.

(3) Management experience.

(4) Any other qualifications required under G.S. 122C-120.1.

(g) In a single-county program, an advisory committee shall be appointed by the board of county commissioners and shall report to the county manager. The appointments shall take into account sufficient citizen participation, equitable representation of the disability groups, and equitable representation of participating counties. The membership shall conform to the requirements in G.S. 122C-118.1. In a multicounty program, the advisory committee shall be appointed in accordance with the terms of the interlocal agreement.

(h) The county program may contract to provide services to governmental or private entities, including Employee Assistance Programs.

(i) Except as otherwise specifically provided, this Chapter applies to counties that provide mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services through a county program. As used in the applicable sections of this Article, the terms "area authority", "area program", and "area facility" shall be construed to include "county program". (2001-437, s. 1.9; 2006-66, s. 10.32(e); 2006-142, s. 4(f), (g), (i), (j); 2012-151, s. 2(b).)