(CHICAGO) The federal government is allowing the State of Illinois to use $2 billion in Medicaid dollars to invest in behavioral health programs partly meant to address the opioid crisis. Governor Bruce Rauner said yesterday that the state received a waiver for the effort from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services while the state will use the existing Medicaid funds to test ten (10) pilot programs to expand preventive and community health services, many of which address treatment for mental illness and substance abuse. The federal waiver will expire in five years, however the waiver can be renewed.
(SPRINGFIELD) The Office of the State Fire Marshall is highlighting how Illinois communities can help prevent arson with the release of an online public service announcement. The video coincides with the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s 2018 Arson Awareness Week. The theme is Preventing Arson in Vacant and Abandoned Buildings. Arson is the leading cause of property damage due to fire in America. In 2017, the Fire Marshall’s Division of Arson determined that nearly 40% of the fires they investigated were set intentionally. To view the PSA or for more details, check the State Fire Marshall’s website online.
(DU QUOIN) The opening weekend of the Du Quoin State Fair promises to offer something for everybody as officials have announced the addition of Blackberry Smoke to its grandstand concert series. The southern country-rock band will perform on Saturday, August 25. Tickets for this show and all of the Du Quoin State Fair grandstand concerts will go on sale Saturday morning, May 19, at 10:00, through www.Ticketmaster.com. Tickets can also be purchased in person, at the Du Quoin State Fair Box Office, beginning Monday morning, May 21, at 9:00. Other concert artists include Cheap Trick, Dueling Pianos International, Brothers Osborne, the POP2K Tour featuring O-Town, Aaron Carter, Ryan Cabrera, and Tyler Hilton, and the Gen-X Tour featuring Buckcherry, P.O.D., Lit, and Alien Ant Farm. For more on Illinois’ second State Fair, August 24 through September 3, go online at www.duquoinstatefair.net.