Portman participates in opioid discussion

MARION – U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) participated Wednesday in an opioid roundtable discussion hosted by the county Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health (ADAMH) Board with local law enforcement, advocates and individuals in recovery.

Portman helped secure $1 billion in opioid funding through the bipartisan 21st Century CURES Act, which was signed into law in 2016. As a result of the CURES law, the Crawford-Marion ADAMH Board received a $120,000 grant in 2017 to fund recovery coaches and rapid engagement specialists. The Crawford-Marion ADAMH Board will receive an additional $240,000 in 2018 as a result of Year 2 CURES funding to expand on these programs and also provide Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT) in jails.

“I was grateful for the opportunity to meet with Marion county officials, advocates and law enforcement to discuss how the opioid epidemic is impacting Marion and the surrounding community. The dedication and engagement across Marion County is an example of the unified effort needed to overcome the opioid epidemic gripping our state,” Portman said. “I have worked hard to secure CURES funding for Ohio, and I’m pleased that it is making a difference in communities like Marion. I’m also working on other bipartisan legislation, such as CARA 2.0, which will help direct the $6 billion over two years to help combat this epidemic. My STOP Act will help keep synthetic drugs like fentanyl and carfentanil out of our communities. While this problem won’t be solved on the federal level, we can certainly be a better partner to the efforts of community leaders and advocates like I met with [Wednesday].”

Portman has been a leader in the fight for more funding to combat this crisis. Portman worked to secure $1 billion in funding from the CURES law for state grants to fight opioid abuse, $181 million annually in discretionary spending for new programs through his bipartisan Comprehensive Addiction & Recovery Act (CARA), and approximately $3 billion in new opioid funding in the most recent bipartisan funding agreement.

Also, Portman introduced the bipartisan CARA 2.0 Act. This bill will build on the success of CARA, provide additional resources to help turn the tide of addiction, and put in place policy reforms that will strengthen the federal government’s response to this crisis. Portman also recently introduced the bipartisan Synthetics Trafficking & Overdose Prevention (STOP) Act, which is designed to help stop dangerous synthetic drugs like fentanyl and carfentanil from being shipped through our borders to drug traffickers in the United States.