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00000174-c556-d691-a376-cdd69e980000Day after day, week after week, the headlines in Northeast Ohio and across much of the country contain news of tragic loss: lives lost to opioids. It’s a problem that knows no bounds: geography, race, gender, level of education or income.The problem took on new urgency this summer as the powerful elephant sedative, Carfentanil, began hitting the streets. First responders armed with their only weapon, the overdose antidote Naloxone, have struggled to keep up with what’s become an overwhelming problem. It’s an issue that’s straining public and social resources. What has become clear is that business as usual is not going to fix the problem.WKSU news has been covering the unfolding crisis. Tuesdays during Morning Edition, the WKSU news team digs even deeper. WKSU reporters will examine what’s led us here and what might be done to turn the tide. Support for Opioids: Turning the Tide in the Crisis comes from Wayne Savings Community Bank, Kent State University Office of Continuing and Distance Education, Hometown Grocery Delivery, Mercy Medical Center, AxessPointe Community Health Center, Community Support Services, Inc., Medina County District Library and Hudson Community First.00000174-c556-d691-a376-cdd69e980001

Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor Pushes Billion Dollar Plan to Fight Opioids

photo of Mary Taylor
ANDY CHOW
/
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio’s Lieutenant Governor - who is running for the Republican nomination for governor next year - is pushing a plan to deal with opioids that some consider unusual, especially given her opposition to Medicaid expansion.

Mary Taylor fought against expanding Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act. Her boss, Gov. John Kasich, went around her and the legislature to put the plan in place anyway. And he says it's helped with the opioid crisis. Taylor now says as governor, she would propose a 10-year bond issue of up to $1 billion for new treatment facilities and medical research. And she says it also could help patients who don’t have health insurance. Voters would have to approve the issue. And Taylor, whose two sons who have battled opioid abuse, also says she'd end Medicaid expansion. Taylor faces Attorney General Mike DeWine, Secretary of State Jon Husted and former congressman Jim Renacci in the May primary for Governor.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment. Jo started her career in Louisville, Kentucky in the mid 80’s when she helped produce a televised presidential debate for ABC News, worked for a creative services company and served as a general assignment report for a commercial radio station. In 1989, she returned back to her native Ohio to work at the WOSU Stations in Columbus where she began a long resume in public radio.