LANSING — Today, the Michigan Senate passed state Rep. Andy Schor’s (D-Lansing) House Bill 4207 and HB 4403, sending both bills to Gov. Rick Snyder for his signature. HB 4207 would direct existing revitalization dollars toward bringing grocery stores to downtowns and commercial corridors, while HB 4403 would codify the ability of Michigan to use Medicaid dollars for opioid abuse treatment.

“Grocery stores are key to a vibrant community because people want to be close to a store to buy bread, milk and whatever they need for dinner that day,” said Schor. “Easy access to grocery stores will help residents while making our downtowns and neighborhoods more attractive to new people and businesses.”

Schor explained that many downtowns and commercial corridors in our neighborhoods are attracting people of all ages, but a lack of easily accessible grocery stores is still a stumbling block for communities. HB 4207 would help by making it easier for store owners to open in these locations, or help existing stores to upgrade their facilities, so that people would have quicker, easier access to healthy food.

Schor’s other bill would help economically disadvantaged families fight back against the opioid epidemic.

“Hardly a day goes by when we don’t hear more about the opioid epidemic effecting too many of our families. My legislation helps ensure people can get the treatment they need even if they’re on Medicaid,” said Schor. “Being poor should not be a barrier to getting help.”

HB 4403 codifies the ability of the state to use federal Medicaid dollars for funding medically supervised detox and other services, including inpatient services commonly called rehab. Research shows increased success rates when people access these medical options, which help people navigate the crucial and risky time when they first choose to stop using opioid drugs. The medical care that helps with withdrawal symptoms, and the safe places provided for detoxification and stabilization in the first couple weeks often makes a huge difference.

“Each of these bills help with pressing issues I see in Lansing and around Michigan. Both should make real differences for our families and communities once Gov. Snyder signs them into law,” said Rep. Schor. “I’m glad the Senate saw the value of my bills and took action to send them on to the governor.”