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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Parisi announces 2017 budget proposal

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced his nearly $584 million 2017 budget Thursday, highlighting initiatives to combat homelessness, opiate use and mental health.

Parisi created an initiative in his 2014 budget that brought mental health crisis teams to local schools to work with kids, parents and teachers. His 2017 budget adds another one of those teams to the Madison school district. That team will be jointly funded by the school district and the county.

In his press release on the budget, Parisi noted increasing numbers of emergency responses to suspected heroin and opiate abuses. Parisi is doubling District Attorney’s Opiates Deferred Prosecution Program, allowing the county to get twice as many people facing opiate-related charges into treatment and rehabilitation.

“Getting people to choose and stay on that path is the greatest challenge,” Parisi said in the release. “Alcohol and Drug Treatment programs are available through the County but alone will not solve the problem. We must be sure to take full advantage of opportunities to guide those burdened by addiction to the help they need.”

Parisi also addressed homelessness in his budget, fully funding the already established $2.4 million Day Resource Center. Parisi is also proposing increasing funding by $90,000 for the “Housing Hotline,” which could better connect homeless people with resources available in the county.

The average property tax levy will increase by 2.5 percent, or $19.61, on the average Madison home, which is valued at $254,593.

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