House Panel Approves Feigenholtz Bill to Boost Drug, Alcohol Abuse Prevention and Treatment by $74 Million; Quinn, Legislative Leaders Urged to Support Plan

(Springfield, IL) – The Illinois House Appropriations Human Services Committee today approved 17-1 legislation to give a $74 million financial boost to community addiction treatment providers who are relentlessly confronting deadly accidents involving youth linked to alcohol or drugs.

“Alcohol abuse and drunk driving continue to exact a terrible, deadly toll on youth and children in communities throughout Illinois,” said Sara Moscato Howe, CEO of the Illinois Alcoholism and Drug Dependence Association. “Substance abuse is recession-proof.”

State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz

State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz

“We are calling on Governor Pat Quinn, Speaker Michael Madigan, House Minority Leader Tom Cross, Senate President John Cullerton, and Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno to support State Rep. Feigenholtz’s legislation to invest an additional $74 million this year into under-funded state prevention and treatment services,” said Moscato-Howe.

“We recognize the state faces tough budget problems, but we can’t put a price tag saving peoples’ lives,” Moscato-Howe added.

Feigenholtz’s legislation, House Bill 3928, would appropriate an additional $18,100,000 to community based addiction treatment for Medicaid eligible individuals and KidCare enrolled children.  The legislation would also appropriate an additional $6,000,000 to expand addiction prevention services for youth..

Moscato-Howe also noted a Illinois Department of Human Services study revealed that in 2006 nearly 40% of Illinois 12th graders had rode in a car with a drunk or high teenager in the last year and 30% had had the same experience with a drunk or high adult.

“Youth are at risk from their own problems with substance abuse and the substance abuse problems of adults,” said Moscato-Howe. “That’s why the entire Illinois substance abuse treatment system needs the financial investment.”

“We are grateful to Rep. Feigenholtz and the members of the committee for their commitment to the battle against underage drinking and their support for prevention and treatment.”

Voting “yes” were State Representatives: Sara Feigenholtz, Harry Osterman, Rosemary Mulligan, Patricia Bellock, Beth Coulson, Keith Farnham, Jehan Gordon, Deborah Graham, Elizabeth Hernandez, Eddie Jackson, David Leitch, Deb Mell, Kathy Ryg, Angelo “Skip” Saviano, Tim Schmitz, Darlene Senger, Mark Walker, and Eddie Washington.

Voting “no” was State Represenative: Ron Stephens.