WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and U.S. Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) announced today Kentucky received $1,116,000 for substance abuse transitional housing programs from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) recently-launched Recovery Housing Program. The HUD program was authorized by the CAREER Act, which was introduced in the Senate and House by McConnell and Barr, respectively. President Trump signed the CAREER Act into law as part of the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act in October 2018.
The CAREER Act recognized the links among transitional housing, steady employment, and long-term recovery for those suffering from substance abuse. The law directs HUD to establish a pilot program focused on the 25 areas hardest-hit by the substance abuse epidemic. Kentucky, along with 23 other states and DC, were chosen to receive federal funds to support those in recovery.
“As Senate Majority Leader, I’ve mobilized the federal government to tackle the opioid and substance abuse crisis by directing over $275 million to our Commonwealth’s comprehensive prevention, treatment, and enforcement efforts,” said Senator McConnell. “Congressman Andy Barr has been an indispensable partner in this effort, including to promote safe, transitional housing options for Kentuckians rebuilding their lives. I look forward to working with him and the dedicated professionals across Kentucky as we help save lives from addiction.”
“More help is on the way for Kentuckians in recovery from substance abuse,” said Congressman Barr. “Through the Sixth District Recovery Working Group – a coalition of non-profit addiction recovery organizations that I convened several years ago – I have consistently heard about the need for federal resources to support long-term transitional housing. As a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, which has jurisdiction over federal housing policy, I understand the importance of transitional housing, financial literacy, and job training as part of the recovery process. I want to thank Leader McConnell for shepherding this through the Senate. This funding will be invaluable for Americans in recovery.”
Since becoming Majority Leader in 2015, Senator McConnell has prioritized the fight against the opioid and substance abuse epidemic by increasing federal funding for the response. Under Senator McConnell’s leadership, Kentucky has received more than $275 million. He worked with the University of Kentucky to help secure an $87 million competitive federal grant—the largest in school history—to address the opioid crisis in high-risk communities. He has also helped secure the inclusion of some of Kentucky’s hardest-hit counties in the ONDCP’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program to promote coordination and support for law enforcement in Kentucky.
Senator McConnell consistently draws attention to Kentucky’s prevention, treatment and enforcement efforts with the President’s Cabinet and federal agencies. Multiple ONDCP Directors, known as “Drug Czars,” have visited Kentucky at his request to see the innovative work being done in the Commonwealth. This year, current-ONDCP Director Jim Carroll visited Simpson, Logan, Clark, and Boyd counties at Senator McConnell’s request to discuss the benefits of their recent HIDTA designations.