The Hubbard County Board authorized the release of $30,000 from the county’s Adult Mental Health Initiative fund reserves to assist the Hubbard County Developmental Achievement Center (DAC).

Hubbard County Adult Services Supervisor Joshua Curtis said the monies had been previously allocated to the DAC. “They were basically sitting there, waiting to be disbursed,” he told county commissioners at their July 7 meeting. “We decided to pull the trigger on it when they got their support employment program going right now and they’re going to need assistance with their staffing levels in the coming weeks and months as clients are returning to the workplace there.”

Curtis said the DAC is “probably looking at more individualized staffing patterns, as many of the clients may need more redirection, more assistance in basically being safe at work.”

In a June 29 letter to the DAC, Curtis explained that the reserves from fiscal year 2019 would “further improve services or clients served through the DAC. The utilization of these funds will be at DAC administration’s discretion to disburse in different areas according to that agency’s needs. Disbursement of these funds cannot be utilized to pay for services not rendered, but may be utilized for any documented program improvement or bolstering necessary staffing patterns in order to better serve our clients.”

DAC Executive Director Laura Johnson said the group served by this program are specifically people with severe mental illness. “We provide employment for them at our program,” she said. “COVID and isolation and the fear that comes along with that has made it more difficult for some of these people that we serve.”

The storefront supports the program while providing employment opportunities. Shopping is brisker during the summer months, she said, but this year they are only seeing one-third of their normal business.

The board unanimously authorized the release of the money.