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Governor Brown Will Sign New Laws to Combat Opioid Crisis

Two separate bills aimed at assessing and addressing the opioid epidemic are expected to receive Governor Brown's signature on Tuesday.

Posted: Mar 26, 2018 11:24 AM
Updated: Mar 26, 2018 11:33 AM

PORTLAND, Ore. — Two bills which passed both Oregon's House and Senate with unanimous bipartisan support are set to receive Governor Kate Brown's signature on Tuesday, March 27.

House Bill 4143 will require the Department of Consumer and Business Services to study stumbling blocks in methods of effective treatment for recovery from substance abuse—particularly opiate addiction—and provide a report to lawmakers by June 30 of this year.

House Bill 4137 charges a new Director of the Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission with providing recommendations for a comprehensive plan to address addiction, prevention, treatment and recovery by December 31 of this year. The bill also declares a public health "emergency."

While neither bill directly provides the means for combating the opioid crisis, both were drafted to give lawmakers the best and most recent information—a roadmap—so that subsequent legislation and programs can more effectively create change.

Prior to signing the bills, Governor Brown will be meeting with crisis-line volunteers from the non-profit group Lines for Life, which aims to help prevent substance abuse and suicide. The meeting will begin at 1:00 p.m. at the Lines for Life office in Portland, followed immediately by the bill signing.

Governor Brown introduced HB 4143 to state lawmakers at the end of January this year. HB 4137 was sponsored by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, also at the end of January.

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