City Council preview: Laguna Beach to consider deal with Be Well OC for mental health services

Laguna Beach City Hall.
Laguna Beach will consider entering into an agreement with Be Well OC for mobile mental health services during its upcoming City Council meeting on Tuesday. The mobile mental health services would lighten the load on law enforcement and emergency medical services.
(Don Leach / Staff Photographer)

The Laguna Beach City Council at its meeting Tuesday night will consider entering into an agreement with Be Well Orange County for mobile mental health services.

The services would lighten the load on law enforcement and emergency medical services. A mobile response team would handle calls for service for mental health issues that do not present a dangerous situation or require medical care.

Additionally, the Be Well OC response team would work with the homeless community in Laguna Beach, following up with support after initial engagements.


Be Well OC currently provides similar services to several cities, including Huntington Beach, Irvine and Newport Beach.

The City Council will consider whether to allow the city manager to enter into a two-year agreement with the agency for the services. An agreement would bring two crisis counselors to Laguna Beach, and the mobile response team would be available for 12 hours daily. The anticipated start date would be July 1, the first day of the city’s 2023-24 fiscal year.

The proposed two-year term would come at a cost of $1.75 million, but a staff report said the city’s contribution would be $250,000 due to outside funding. Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris secured $1.5 million in state funding for the mobile response program, according to a city staff report.

Laguna Beach High football team to be recognized

After bringing the town its first CIF football championship since 1946, the Laguna Beach High football team will be recognized with a proclamation at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

Laguna Beach earned a 36-28 win at Diamond Bar to claim the Southern Section Division 9 title. The Breakers went 11-4, reaching the CIF State Southern California regional playoffs for the first time.

The proclamation also makes reference to Bella Rasmussen, who made headlines as the first girl in state history to score two touchdowns in a varsity football game. She also signed a name, image and likeness deal.

“Huge, huge honor,” Laguna Beach football coach John Shanahan said. “A culmination of tremendous, consistent hard work and toughness, especially for our football team, overcoming a lot of adversity last year. Just really proud of our guys, and they deserve all the recognition they’re getting.”

Shanahan added that the football team will be marching in the Laguna Beach Patriots Day Parade on Saturday.

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