DCS/LGU Resources

Local Services Planning Process and Guidelines

One of the primary responsibilities of the LGU under Article 41 of the Mental Hygiene Law (MHL) is to develop and annually submit a Local Services Plan (LSP) to each NYS mental hygiene agency. The Mental Hygiene Agencies are the Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS), the Office of Mental Health (OMH) and the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).  The LSP establishes the local priorities, needs and outcomes for the LGU in the coming year and the metrics used to measure the outcome.  The local plans are approved the by LGU’s Community Services Board, which is comprised of local service providers, consumers and other community members, and are subsequently submitted, approved and “certified” by the state agencies.  

LGUs have been conducting local planning since the 1970s.  The process has evolved into an electronic format through the County Planning System (CPS) which allows local planners to access relevant and timely data resources to conduct needs assessments and planning using one standardized format for all of the three agencies.  The Mental Hygiene Planning Committee includes representatives from the OMH, OASAS and OPWDD, the NYS Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors (CLMHD), and LGUs. The committee meets regularly to guide and update the local planning process to reflect changes and to develop resources that support the work of county planners. This collaboration enables LGUs to conduct local planning in a more integrated fashion that creates system-wide improvements in the quality of services and supports to individuals, families and communities.




Early April

“LSP Guidelines: Question Outline”- A paper version of the LSP forms so that LGUs will know what questions they will be asked and can begin to solicit input from stakeholders.

Late April/Early May

“LSP Guidelines: State Priorities”- Information and updates from State agencies to inform local priorities

Early May

Links to electronic plan forms will be emailed to LGUs; LGUs can begin formally submitting the plans electronically

June 30

LSP electronic forms due

Below are links to the four forms that comprise the 2024-2027 Local Services Plans. The deadline is June 30, 2023. In the past, there have been situations where local stakeholders have inadvertently filled out forms on behalf of an LGU. To prevent this from occurring, the 2024 forms require a password. LGUs: Please contact the Conference at (518) 462-9422 to obtain the password.

If you need an extension, please contact oasasplanning@oasas.ny.gov and state the date you would like the deadline extended to.  In a separate email last week, you should have received Word document practice templates for the 2024 forms.  If you did not, please contact us and we will resend. 

It is highly recommended that LGUs write out draft responses to the planning questions and then paste them into the form, rather than composing the plan directly in the online form. 

Each form contains a “Save and Resume” link so that you may pause working on the form and come back to it later. The “Save and Resume” feature provides you a unique link to resume answering questions, as well as an option to email yourself this link.  It is highly recommended that LGUs copy the link and save it in a safe place, such as a Word document, in case the email does not work. Without the link, the data entered cannot be retrieved, and the form will have to be started again at the beginning. Additionally, file uploads will not save using the “Save and Resume” feature, so if you intend to upload supporting documentation, wait until you are ready to submit all forms.

The core forms comprising the Local Services Plans are:

1) Goals and Objectives Form: https://oasas.formstack.com/forms/2024_goals_and_objectives

2) Needs Assessment Form: https://oasas.formstack.com/forms/2024_needs_assessment_form

These forms are related in that, Goals from the Goals and Objectives Form may address Needs identified on the Needs Assessment form. In order to eliminate duplication of effort, if a Need is addressed by a Goal, then it does not need a descriptive paragraph on the Needs Assessment form. 

In addition to the two core forms, there are two surveys in the 2024 Plan:

3) CLMHD Mental Hygiene Planning Racial Equity Subcommittee Survey: https://oasas.formstack.com/forms/2024_clmhd_mental_hygiene_planning_racial_equity_subcommittee_survey

4) 2024 OASAS Recovery Residence Landscape Survey: https://oasas.formstack.com/forms/oasas_recovery_residence_landscape_survey