It is critical that Congress do more to combat the opioid epidemic, especially in our home state of Kentucky.  Our Commonwealth has been hit hard by the epidemic, as we have the fifth highest overdose mortality rate in the nation. That’s why I have supported major opioid projects in the Sixth District that include:

  • An $87 million federal grant to the University of Kentucky to support UK’s HEALing Communities research.  This project aims to reduce opioid fatalities by 40% in three years across sixteen counties in Kentucky, including Franklin, Bourbon, Fayette, Jessamine, Clark and Madison counties in the Sixth District. 
  • A $511,078 federal grant awarded in December of 2020 from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to the City of Lexington to enable the city to continue services for survivors of substance abuse overdoses, which include casework management, treatment providers, housing assistance and other mental health services. 
  • A $433,903 federal grant awarded in October of 2020 from the DOJ for Shepherds House in Lexington.  Shepherds House has over three decades of experience providing multiple recovery programs to rehabilitate dozens of people in recovery from substance abuse each year. 
  • Supporting the University of Kentucky’s PATHways/Beyond Birth Team application, securing a $4.9 million federal grant.
  • Supporting the Chrysalis House’s grant application, securing $2.6 million to provide services to pregnant and postpartum women and their children.

High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Designations: 

  • HIDTA designations provide additional federal resources to enhance federal, state and local collaboration to stop drug trafficking and prosecute other drug crimes. 
  • Since taking office, I have successfully advocated for designations to the following Sixth District counties: Madison, Montgomery, Powell and most recently Clark County in June of 2020. 
  • HIDTA designations are made by the White House Office of National Drug Policy (ONDCP).  In October of 2020, I hosted ONDCP Jim Carroll in the Sixth District to meet with local law enforcement and discuss ways to strengthen federal, state and local partnership to enforce drug crime in Kentucky. 


  • The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act to empower our communities and law enforcement fight the opioid epidemic. This legislation included my bill, the CAREER Act, which addresses the decline in workforce development by encouraging local businesses and treatment centers to form partnerships to secure job training, employment, and housing options for individuals in recovery.
  • In December of 2020, the Commonwealth received a $1.1 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Recovery Housing Program.  This grant program was established through the CAREER Act that I championed in Congress. 

More on the Opioid Epidemic