MADISON, WI – The Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee on Finance (JFC), State Representative Mark Born (R-Beaver Dam) and State Senator Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green) released the following statement related to the JFC improvements for the opioid settlement plan:
“The legislature improved the Department of Health Services (DHS) plan to spend $31 million in opioid settlement funds, including recommendations from community partners throughout the state who are currently battling the opioid epidemic in Wisconsin.
“Several stakeholders, who are ready to apply these settlement funds directly to the battle against opioid abuse in our communities, joined us today to discuss the impact these funds will have in their work to fight the drug epidemic. We were honored to be joined by Grant County Sheriff Nate Dreckman, President of the Badger State Sheriff’s Association; Sarah Neerdaels and Dr. Michael Goldstone from Comprehensive Treatment Centers Central Group, which provides medication assisted treatment – or MAT – services for those battling addiction; and Karen DeSanto, Former President of the Boys and Girls Club of Wisconsin and CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of West-Central Wisconsin to talk about an innovative program to reach our kids.
“All of these partner organizations needed to be part of the conversation for crafting this plan. We are confident that these investments will make a difference in our communities.
“After receiving DHS’ plan, we felt that there were several important stakeholders and considerations that the department did not include. The legislature’s improvements make investments in proven programming, organizations and initiatives that have made a difference. We think that increasing investments in these areas will expand our ability to address the opioid issues in Wisconsin and are a meaningful investment of the settlement funds.”