Attorney General Morrisey Asks Governor and Legislature to Fund Substance Abuse Fight‏

Updated 1 year ago by WV Attorney General Patrick Morrisey
CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey reiterated his request that $10 million returned by his office to the state’s General Fund be used to fund drug abuse treatment and reduce the backlog of drug tests at the West Virginia State Police crime lab.

 
“From my perspective, there is no greater threat to the citizens of the State of West Virginia than substance abuse,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “That’s why we have made fighting this epidemic our top consumer protection priority.”
 
The $10 million, including $8.5 million subject to a pending supplemental bill, will be transferred from the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Fund.
 
Attorney General Morrisey recognizes that his office is not the arbiter of how these funds are spent, but he is hopeful the Legislature will utilize these newfound monies to address the state’s growing number of drug-related deaths.
 
“Some of these monies simply need to be used to fight substance abuse and to reduce the backlog of any tests at the state crime lab,” Attorney General Morrisey said.
 
Attorney General Morrisey believes this demonstrate his office’s continued commitment to help West Virginia fight its battle against substance abuse in the Mountain State.
 
Each dollar returned to the state coffers also represents one less dollar its Governor Tomblin and state legislators must take from the Rainy Day Fund to balance the state’s struggling budget.
 
The return of $10 million was initially announced last week. It ensures that West Virginia realizes the benefit of settlements obtained by this office and the state’s Department of Health and Human Resources and Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.
 
This, combined with another $5 million given back earlier this year, marks the fifth time that Attorney General Morrisey’s office has voluntarily returned significant money to the state’s general fund – a cumulative tally of $33.5 million.
 
Attorney General Morrisey returned $5 million in March, $2 million in 2015, $9 million in 2014 and $7.5 million in 2013.
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