Opioid Response Bill becomes law in Minnesota

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(ABC 6 News) – Tuesday, Governor Tim Walz held a ceremonial bill signing of Minnesota’s Opioid Response bill.

The bill ensures Minnesota’s 300 million dollar share of a multi-state legal settlement with opioid manufacturers will be used by communities across the state for education, treatment, prevention, and recovery strategies.

Seventy-five percent of the funds will go to local governments and 25 percent will go to the state.

“The faster we can get these resources into the hands of our communities, the better,” said Governor Walz. “This legislation allows us to hold pharmaceutical companies accountable for the devastation they’ve caused for families across the state, while expanding the systems that work and investing in new strategies to help communities address the crisis.”

In February 2022, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced a multi-state $26 billion agreement with major opioid manufacturer Johnson & Johnson, and the three major pharmaceutical distributors: Cardinal, McKesson, and AmerisourceBergen. Minnesota’s share of this agreement was $300 million over the next 18 years. Each state’s share of the takes into consideration the impact of the crisis on the state – the number of overdose deaths, the number of residents with substance use disorder, and the number of opioids prescribed – and the population of the state.