Requesting that the department of accounting and general services search for surplus property within the state system that could be leased to substance abuse treatment programs to assist in the treatment of recovering addicts and that the department of health and department of human services look for available federal monies and other grants to help develop housing facilities for these treatment programs.



WHEREAS, substance abuse has been a steadily increasing problem in the State of Hawaii since the late 1970s, especially with regard to the use of crystal methamphetamine, more commonly known as "ice", and is becoming more widespread, reaching epidemic proportions; and

WHEREAS, this epidemic is a serious public health care crisis which, if left unchecked, will continue to consume large amounts of government resources and destroy families and individual lives, and is a crisis that needs to be abated as soon as possible to protect Hawaii's future generations and resources; and

WHEREAS, a survey conducted in 1998 indicated that over 7,000 individuals needed treatment for illicit drug use, while over 82,000 needed treatment for all types of substances abused, including alcohol, numbers that have significantly increased over the last six years; and

WHEREAS, in response to this epidemic, the Legislature formed the Joint House-Senate Task Force on Ice and Drug Abatement (Task Force) which was charged with gathering information and obtaining public input on the extent of the substance abuse problem in Hawaii and to use this information to formulate possible solutions to the problem; and

WHEREAS, after presiding over eighty hours of public hearings, listening to over four hundred testifiers, and attending numerous community and town hall meetings, the Task Force concluded that the solution to the ice epidemic in Hawaii is to prevent future generations from becoming substance abusers and to cure the present generation of ice abusers; and

WHEREAS, the Task Force found through its investigation that substance abuse treatment is an effective means of combating ice addiction, as well as other forms of substance abuse, since it generally consists of a continuum of care necessary for recovery; and

WHEREAS, although clean and sober housing facilities providing an environment that challenges addiction behaviors, rewards abstinence, and removes those with substance abuse problems from the environment that more than likely caused the addiction in the first place are available on Oahu, the same is not true for the neighbor islands, and all are independently operated with little financial support from public resources; and

WHEREAS, efforts need to be made to facilitate the ability of organizations to establish treatment facilities and programs because they provide a valuable public service in assisting substance abusers, saving the public millions of dollars in the long run by keeping these individuals out of prison and off of welfare; now, therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twenty-second Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2004, that the Department of Accounting and General Services (DAGS) is requested to conduct a search for a surplus of state property which could be leased to substance abuse treatment programs for the establishment of facilities to assist in the treatment of recovering addicts; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Health (DOH) and Department of Human Services (DHS) are requested to work in conjunction with DAGS to look for federal funding and grant monies to assist in the development of these housing facilities for the treatment programs; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that DAGS, along with DOH and DHS, report their findings, including any recommended legislation, to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2005; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Resolution be transmitted to the Governor, and the Directors of Accounting and General Services, Health, and Human Services.






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