COLUMBUS - Addiction to opiates is an epidemic that has been plaguing our local communities, the state, and the nation as a whole for sometime. Ohio has been hit especially hard, with the most opiate-related deaths in the nation in 2015.
State Representative Rick Carfagna, who represents Knox County and part of Delaware County at the Statehouse said, "This problem is far too complex for a single measure to bring it to an end, but I am hopeful that several initiatives enacted in the state budget, along with an all-hands-on-deck approach, will create a strong front line."
Through what is known as the HOPES (Heroin, Opioids, Prevention, Education, Safety) Agenda, the legislature invested $180 million in new money to specifically go towards fighting this epidemic. Four key areas were identified - prevention, treatment, mental health, and the workforce - as focus points for funding. The image below provides a detailed breakdown of funding.