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Illinois lawmakers’ heroin proposal has $25M price tag

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ Two Illinois lawmakers have announced bipartisan legislation that would spend $25 million to fight an epidemic of heroin and prescription drug abuse.

Some cast doubt that the measure can be approved when the state faces a multi-billion dollar budget hole. But Democratic Rep. Leader Lou Lang and Republican Rep. John Anthony say their proposal is far cheaper than watching the problem continue to grow around Illinois.

The legislation would require drugs combating heroin overdoses to be dispensed and administered more widely. It would require the state board of education to develop a heroin and opiate drug prevention program. It would also require pharmacies to take back unused painkillers.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has proposed a budget that makes severe cuts and pledges no tax increases.

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