Assemblyman John Ceretto, D-Lewiston, announced the Assembly's 2016-17 state budget proposal includes $30 million to combat the heroin and opioid epidemic that has swept Western New York. The proposal allocates $15 million to improve heroin addiction treatment services in underserved communities, $9 million for post treatment recovery services, and $6 million for patient engagement programs to help individuals find treatment options.
"Western New York is experiencing the devastating effects of a heroin epidemic that has swept across our state and our nation," Ceretto said. "Too many families have experienced tragic loss and devastation caused by heroin addiction."
Ceretto also announced his office is currently working with the Drug Enforcement Agency, the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services and City of Niagara Falls officials to pursue more appropriate locations for the Northpointe methadone clinic originally proposed at 606 Sixth St. - including the 1625 Buffalo Ave. location. Ceretto emphasized public input would be integral to choosing a new location. Moreover, any proposed location should be situated away from residential areas, he said.
"The heroin epidemic that has swept our nation is a very serious issue, and treatment services are vital to combating the scourge of opioid addiction," Ceretto said. "However, I share the concerns of residents that the new location should not be in a residential area. We need to do everything we can to protect our children and other loved ones from falling victim to deadly heroin and opioid abuse."