Pa Republicans respond to Gov. Wolf’s 15th opioid disaster declaration

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This letter by republican leaders officially notified governor wolf that his 15th disaster declaration on opioids will be his last. The legislature flexing it’s newly granted muscle and asserting its power.

“It’s time for him to sit down and figure out the legislative solutions to this rather than trying to make an end run around the legislature and do this on his own,” said Jason Gotteman, House GOP spokesperson. “That’s what the people of Pennsylvania don’t want.”

The people of Pennsylvania, through a constitutional amendment, gave the legislature veto power over a governor’s disaster declarations. But addiction counselors like Jessica Miller of the Rase Project are concerned.

“I’m out there seeing these people overdosing,” Miller said. “People that are dying, and the rates are going up.”

Miller hoped lawmakers would re-up the disaster declaration, which she insists saved lives.

“The warm handoff program that was initiated, the drug takeback, the naloxone,” Miller said. “All of that plus many more things have been amazing, and we have to keep going because the overdose rates are not going down.”

“It’s disappointing” began a statement from the Wolf Administration, which fears the opioid battle “will be left with a gap as we seek a legislative solution.”

“We want to work collaboratively — House, Senate, Governor — to get things solved for the people of Pennsylvania,” Gotteman said, “so that we can get to the heart of the opioid crisis. An emergency declaration is not the way to go about that.”

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