Tom Cullerton: we cannot rest until heroin problem is eradicated

TCullertonVILLA PARK- Huge strides have been made in addressing the heroin epidemic in DuPage communities, the DuPage Narcan Program (DNP) achieved a tremendous milestone on Thursday with the 100th life saved since the start of the program.

“DuPage County first responders are providing residents with an invaluable service,” State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) said. “I’m proud of the work we continue to do for area residents and look forward to spreading the program’s success throughout the state.”

To spread the success seen with the DNP, Cullerton led the charge last year in Springfield with the passage of House Bill 1.

DuPage County introduced the first county-wide application of Narcan in the state. The DuPage County Health Department organized an effort to equip more than 2,000 people, largely local police, with Narcan at the beginning of 2014.

The legislation addresses heroin and opioid abuse and addiction in Illinois in a variety of different ways, by training public safety entities in administering Narcan, requiring state agencies to develop a three-year heroin and opioid drug prevention program and expanding state-funded treatment to include addiction treatment and prescription costs.

“This program is giving people an opportunity to seek treatment and turn their lives around,” Cullerton said. “We cannot rest until this problem is eradicated from our communities. Until then we will continue to work together to end this epidemic and help people receive the necessary treatment to succeed.”

Throughout the nation, fatal drug overdoses have increased six-fold over three decades, claiming 36,000 American lives every year.

Tom Cullerton: Technology upgrades are key to government efficiency

tc catsdogsVILLA PARK- To streamline the state’s information technology functions the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology (DoIT), a new state agency, was created today.

“To increase government efficiency we need to make major investments in our state’s technology systems,” State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) said. “Today’s technologies provide an excellent opportunity to increase government efficiency, eliminate redundancies, provide cost-savings to taxpayers, and simplify residents’ interactions with government.”

DoIT will spearhead Illinois’ efforts to modernization. All technology decisions will be centralized and put under the umbrella of this new agency.

Cullerton said Illinois has the talent and innovation to create a world-class government technology model.

Hardik Bhatt, Illinois’s chief information officer, will lead the new state agency.

“We need to be more strategic with our technology investments to ensure we are getting the biggest return for our investments,” Cullerton said.  “This agency is a step in the right direction. I look forward to working with Hardik Bhatt and his agency to make sure government is working for the people of Illinois.”

Tom Cullerton's measure to reunite pets with owners goes into effect

Tom Cullerton's measure to reunite pets with owners goes into effectVILLA PARK- Dogs and cats will soon be reunited with their owners faster.

State Senator Tom Cullerton’s (D-Villa Park) initiative that requires animal shelters to scan a dog or cat within 24 hours of being taken into a shelter goes into effect on January 1, 2016.

“My dog Brenna is like a member of my family. If something happened to her, like most pet owners we would want to find her as soon as possible,” Cullerton said. “This new law puts protections in place for cat or dog owners to find lost pets quickly and efficiently.”

The number of cats and dogs reported missing has drastically decreased due to new technology such as microchips and online networks. Cullerton believes this new law will bring the state up to date and save all parties involved money in the long run.

“This new law will save shelters some money and stop a lot of heartbreak,” Cullerton said.

Previously, under the Animal Control Act, public animal shelters are not required to scan for microchips. Dogs and cats can be adopted or euthanized from shelters without scanning for a microchip first.

Tom Cullerton tells College of DuPage, “Stop infighting”

tc civics 53015VILLA PARK- Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) released an open letter to students, faculty and DuPage County taxpayers calling on the College of DuPage’s board to quit its infighting and find a way to work together through the use of a third-party mediator.

“In Springfield, we were able to set our differences aside to negotiate a bipartisan compromise to release gas tax money to local municipalities,” said Cullerton. “If we can work together, so can you.”

This week, the College of DuPage board refused to meet, fueling an impasse. The board was unable to conduct college business, such as discussing new hires and academic programs.

“The students, faculty and tax payers of DuPage County deserve better,” said Cullerton. “The College of DuPage is a tremendous resource to our community. We need a third-party mediator to move us in the right direction to rehabilitate the public image of this fine institution.”

Letter is attached.

Sen. Tom Cullerton


23rd Legislative District

Years served: 2013 - Present

Committee assignments: Energy and Public Utilities; Insurance; Labor; State Government; Transportation; Veterans Affairs (Chairperson); Sub. on Utility Rate Regulations (Sub-Chairperson).

Biography: Born Sept. 20, 1969; studied at the University of Kansas; former village president and trustee of Villa Park; married (wife Stacey), three sons.

Associated Representatives:
Deb Conroy
Diane Pappas