Governor Signs MACo’s STOP Initiative Bill Into Law

Governor Larry Hogan signed MACo’s 2015 legislative initiative bill to revamp the Substance Abuse Treatment Outcomes  Partnership (STOP) grant fund into law at the April 14, 2015 bill signings. SB 641/HB 971 revitalizes the STOP fund program housed in the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene by giving local government greater flexibility to use the grant funds for certain substance abuse treatment and related prevention and outreach efforts.  The grant program supports targeted substance abuse treatment services and populations, as proposed by county governments in response to local needs. SB 641/HB 971 expands the list of eligible populations and functions for grant usage.

SB 641 Bill Signing - Photo Courtesy of the Executive Office of the Governor
SB 641 Bill Signing – Photo Courtesy of the Executive Office of the Governor

STOP was created by a previous MACo initiative in 2001, and in FY 15, nineteen counties were awarded STOP funds totaling some $6.4 million. While additional funding would be welcome, the bill did not mandate any new funding level or process. STOP funding is in addition to and does not replace other State budget appropriations for substance abuse treatment and awarded funds would continue to supplement not supplant any current funding a jurisdiction is receiving for substance abuse treatment.

Previous coverage on Conduit Street:

MACo Supports Substance Abuse Treatment Funding as Initiative

MACo’s Substance Abuse Grant Initiative Voted Out of Committees