Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Salt Lake Tribune Article: TUESDAY, January 27, 2009

Legislators agree on plan to scale back budget cuts

By Robert Gehrke

The Salt Lake Tribune
Updated: 01/26/2009 07:58:30 PM MST

House and Senate Republicans agreed on a budget framework Monday aimed at easing the pain of this year's cuts by putting off some building and water projects and borrowing about $32 million.

Legislators and the governor have found $175 million that they plan to use to patch half of a projected $350 million budget shortfall in the current year. Those funds would lapse on July 1, meaning deep cuts would still be needed next year.

The money would come from postponing a prison expansion, delaying research buildings and raiding the state disaster-recovery fund and water-development loan fund. The GOP legislators approved $32 million in bonds on top of that.

Some in the House Republican caucus objected to borrowing money through bonding. Rep. Eric Hutchings, R-Kearns, compared it to putting money on the credit card when there is cash in the state's Rainy Day Fund.

The Senate approved the same plan in a closed caucus.

Legislators and a spokeswoman for the governor said details on what programs will receive the $175 million cushion still need to be worked out.

House Speaker Dave Clark, R-Santa Clara, once again expressed his frustration that the governor refused to convene a special session to address the budget shortfall in December.

"I think the governor has got bad advice," said Clark. "I think the position we're in right now is far more harmful and … the measures we are going to have to take are going to be

deeper and are going to be felt across this state far more than if we were in a special session."

Friday, January 2, 2009

A Note from the Executive Director

Odyssey House provides its services within the context of an intensive and service-enhanced Therapeutic Community (TC), which is proven to foster citizenship, responsibility, recovery from drugs and alcohol, emotional healing, and cognitive reparation. Therapeutic Communities harness the power and effectiveness of constructive peer influence to evoke positive change in clients, creating a depth of nurturing and support that many clients have never previously experienced. In many ways, the ‘therapist’ is the community itself, consisting of peers and staff who model and expect successful personal change. Within the TC, the primary treatment focus is substance abuse addictions, but goes beyond these problems. This approach views substance abuse and other problems as reflections of chronic deficits in social, educational, vocational, familial, economic, and personality development. Thus, the principal aim of the TC is global life-style change, including abstinence from alcohol and other drugs, elimination of antisocial behavior, enhanced education, constructive employment, and development of prosocial attitudes.

Through this comprehensive treatment program clients receive education and practice in life skills. Clients hold each other accountable, which facilitates each individual making the changes that will assist them in becoming productive citizens with positive social and psychological skills.

The TC incorporates comprehensive services into a single setting. The TC, as a milieu, becomes a springboard with which evidence-based practices and modalities can be employed. TC’s are heralded throughout substance abuse research literature as a treatment of choice, which has made them very popular in most parts of the country. Research demonstrates that TC’s are particularly effective in reducing criminal behavior. Further,the TC model aids in reducing substance abuse, crime and violence and increasing employment and family stability.

Using the TC, Odyssey House effectively tackles self-destructive lifestyles, emotional problems, and antisocial behaviors through treatment, education and prevention services. The participation of TC members in the community places them closer to the real-life situations than do the artificial communities of traditional staff-driven institutions, so they are better prepared to embrace a more productive future. The environment is such that clients have an opportunity to practice skills, learn to have positive relationships with other people, and to become contributing members of society with a hopeful future.

Visit Odyssey House of Utah's Homepage

Visit a squidoo lens about Odyssey House of Utah

Visit other Drug Treatment Resources here