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Kotowski reacts to Rauner rejection of heroin treatment legislation

heroinSPRINGFIELD- State Senator Dan Kotowski (D-Park Ridge) issued the statement below in response to Governor Rauner’s amendatory veto of House Bill 1. The legislation, passed earlier in the year by Kotowski, creates a multi-faceted approach to stopping heroin and opioid abuse by:

  • Requiring doctors and pharmacies to document when narcotics have been prescribed
  • Requiring the State Board of Education to create a heroin and opioid drug prevention program for schools
  • Creating a statewide medication take-back program
  • Allowing a pharmacist to dispense lifesaving Narcan to prevent heroin overdoses

The governor's amendatory veto removes funding for treatment programs targeting low-income individuals.

"Investing in programs to help individuals struggling with drug addiction – regardless of socio-economic status – gives those people an opportunity to break the cycle of addiction and remain productive members of society. Failing to fund these programs now will cost taxpayers substantially more in the long run.

"Signing this landmark legislation, which passed both the House and Senate with large bipartisan majorities, would have saved lives and had an immediate impact in the fight to curb the exploding heroin epidemic taking over our communities and schools.

"While I am encouraged that Governor Rauner acknowledges the growing heroin and opioid problem in our state, we owe it to the victims, families and youth of our communities to take action now."

Sen. President Cullerton

6th Senate District
President of the Senate
(Retired)

Years served: 1979 - 1991 (House); 1991 - 2020 (Senate)

Committee assignments: Committee of the Whole; Executive.

Biography: Attorney; born Oct. 28, 1948, in Chicago; B.A., political science, Loyola University; J.D., Loyola University Law School; served in Illinois National Guard, 1970-76; former Assistant Public Defender and instructor at the National Institute for Trial Advocacy; married (wife, Pamela), has five children.

Associated Representatives:
Sara Feigenholtz
Ann M. Williams