Shaheen Secures Additional $3.3 Billion to Combat Opioid Epidemic in Government Funding Bill with Set-Aside of $142 Million for Hardest Hit StatesMarch 21, 2018
**Due to Shaheen’s advocacy as a member of the Common Sense Caucus and as a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, this legislation provides an increase of $3.3 billion for opioid response efforts**
**SHAHEEN: “For too long, New Hampshire’s healthcare providers, first responders and recovery centers have had to make do as they combat a crisis that is killing hundreds of Granite Staters every year.”**
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and the lead Democrat on the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) Subcommittee, issued the following statement announcing that she helped secure $3.3 billion in additional funding for opioid response efforts in the government funding bill unveiled today. Also due to Shaheen’s advocacy, $142 million of this increase will be used to prioritize states with the highest mortality rates from opioid overdoses. The Trump administration will determine the precise funding amount these states will receive:
“This legislation represents a substantial increase in federal support to respond to the opioid epidemic. These federal dollars will deliver the material assistance that is desperately needed for prevention, treatment, recovery, law enforcement and first responders,” said Shaheen. “To ensure that states with the highest mortality rates receive a fairer share of these resources, this legislation sets aside funding that the Trump administration can deliver to areas of the country where it’s most desperately needed. As this funding becomes available, I’ll be urging President Trump to follow through on his promise and finally prioritize aid for states like New Hampshire that are reeling from this crisis. For too long, New Hampshire’s healthcare providers, first responders and recovery centers have had to make do as they combat a crisis that is killing hundreds of Granite Staters every year. I appreciate the bipartisan support for this additional funding and will keep working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, particularly those in similarly impacted states, to secure additional help that is immediately needed to save lives.”
Senator Shaheen has led efforts in Congress to respond to the opioid crisis. As a result of her advocacy on the bipartisan Common Sense Caucus and her engagement during the writing of this funding bill, Senator Shaheen secured the $3.3 billion in additional resources, which will be dispersed to federal programs that support treatment, recovery, prevention, forensics and first responders.
As the lead Democrat on the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee, Shaheen helped negotiate a substantial increase in funding for law enforcement and grant resources through the Department of Justice (DOJ), totaling $446.5 million, which is nearly $300 million more than last year’s funding bill. This will help local and state communities impacted by the opioid epidemic.
Programs managed by the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) will receive an increase of $227 million more than last year’s funding levels, for a total of $330 million. This includes an increase of $132 million above last year’s funding for the Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Program (COAP).
The bill also includes $30 million for the Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvements Grant Program, of which $17 million will specifically help address forensic obstacles due to the devastating death toll from opioid overdoses and testing of synthetic drugs like fentanyl, which have overwhelmed medical examiners, pathologists and crime labs.
The funding legislation also includes an increase of $22 million from last year to prioritize outreach for youth programs to help children and families affected by the opioid crisis.
Shaheen has separately proposed a $25 billion investment over two years to support programs that provide opioid treatment.
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