Offering those struggling with substance use disorder an alternative to incarceration
FRANKFORT, Ky. (January 31, 2023) – Attorney General Daniel Cameron today announced the Kentucky Opioid Abatement Advisory Commission (OAAC) awarded $10.5 million in funding to a Behavioral Health Conditional Dismissal Pilot Program, as directed by Senate Bill 90. The funds will combat the opioid epidemic by providing behavioral health treatment options as an alternative to incarceration for those struggling with substance use disorder.
“This award of opioid settlement dollars is the first step toward bringing hope and help to Kentuckians struggling with substance use disorder,” said Attorney General Cameron. “This innovative pilot program will begin to treat this challenge as the health problem it is, and I am grateful to President Stivers, Senator Storm, and Senator Westerfield for sponsoring this bill and to members of the House and the entire General Assembly for their foresight in adopting this initiative.”
This is the OAAC’s first funding award and follows the passage of Senate Bill 90 by the General Assembly during the 2022 legislative session, which allows those suffering from substance use disorder who are charged with certain non-violent drug crimes to take part in a personalized treatment and recovery plan instead of facing incarceration.
“Co-sponsoring Senate Bill 90 is one way I am working to help Kentuckians charged with non-violent drug offenses break the cycle of addiction,” said Senate President Robert Stivers. “I am thankful to Senator Storm and Westerfield for co-sponsoring this bill and to Attorney General Cameron for securing the opioid settlement funding that made this pilot program possible.”
The OAAC was established by the General Assembly’s passage of House Bill 427 and is responsible for administering the Commonwealth’s portion of over $842 million in settlement funds received from opioid companies which were secured by Attorney General Cameron’s office for the companies’ role in fueling the opioid epidemic.
“This pilot program is an incredible tool in our fight against the opioid epidemic,” said Speaker of the House Osborne. “I’m grateful to the Attorney General for his efforts to address this crisis by securing opioid settlement funds and to the Opioid Abatement Advisory Commission for their work to administer the Commonwealth’s portion of this funding.”
Organizations that intend to apply for OAAC grants may visit ag.ky.gov/OAAC.
“Our Commission has diligently undertaken the task of administering the Commonwealth’s portion of opioid settlement funds by holding ten town halls across the Commonwealth to hear from Kentuckians harmed by the opioid crisis, said OAAC Executive Director Bryan Hubbard. “We are pleased to make this first award and look forward to making many more in the days ahead.”
To see a video of this funding announcement, click here.
To learn more about Senate Bill 90, click here, and for more information on the work of the Opioid Abatement Advisory Commission, click here.