People Above Politics

Litz brings Local Government, Small Business, and Conservation Experience to the Table.

   Jo Ellen is a 4-term Lebanon County Commissioner who was elected by her peers from across the state of Pennsylvania to serve as the 2012 president and 2013 chairman of the Board for the statewide commissioner's association.  Litz is about starting a conversation from public structures like roads and bridges, water and sewer, schools, and energy.  A sound infrastructure is the basis of a sound economy.  Litz believes we need these Economy Boosting Jobs to put money into the pockets of people so that they can buy homes, cars, and goods.  Litz supports a transportation plan to make our roads and bridges safe.  In this way, we will create good paying jobs, get people to these jobs, our goods to market, and children to schools. 

Jo Ellen serves as the chair of the MPO--Metropolitan Planning Organization for Lebanon County--where she helps to prioritize local road and bridge projects with PennDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.  She is the Boots on the Ground for local government.

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Litz Co Commercial Rentals, 1.386 acre Property Available with established Rt 422 access & curb cuts.  Out of flood plain. Footprint under stone preserves exemptions like setbacks and multiple buildings on site.

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Lebanon PA  17046

644-4698

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Your early and monthly donation will help Jo Ellen to get elected by printing literature, reserving media buys, ordering signs….  

Thank you for your help and support during this campaign.  Your unwavering commitment is the wind beneath my wings.

On election day, every vote matters.  You matter!  And I can't win this race without you.
 
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Thank you for your support and for all that you do.

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People Above Politics

Team Litz:  Treasurer, Cathy Garrison

Honorary Chair:     Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll --a woman who broke the glass ceiling and contributed greatly to PA politics; born in 1930, died November 12, 2008.

Jo Ellen Litz Campaign Video
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[TRANSLATED] Jo Ellen Litz Campaign Video

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Frequently asked questions about locating a Methadone House in Lebanon County? First, drug and alcohol treatment is a mandated responsibility of a county.
Where do Lebanon residents get methadone treatments now? They must travel daily to Harrisburg, Reading or Coatesville.
That's not so far. True, but the closer the treatment, the more likely someone will stay with the program.
Why should I care if someone stays on methadone? Heroin addiction is an expensive habit--$10/pack used 10 times/day.
What kind of job would a person need to support the habit? People usually end up committing crimes to support their habit.
They should be in jail for using illegal drugs and/or stealing. Did you know that when people are in jail it costs you and all taxpayers a lot of money?  While some inmates contribute to their stay, Lebanon County residents are responsible to cover the costs of unpaid food, clothing, and shelter to house inmates at the prison as well as medical care and of course the guards' salaries.  Right now, Lebanon County has a bond issue to expand the prison as well as a request to hire two more guards.
Aren't we just substituting one drug for another? People can't stop using heroin on their own. Many people can eventually get off of methadone. In the interim, they can function normally.
I don't get it.  Nobody told them to use drugs, and drugs are illegal. You are right.  However, we have children as young as 10 who are given free heroin to get them hooked.  They need our help.
What is the difference between Renaissance Counseling Service at the VA and this program? Renaissance is a last resort for hardened criminals who would otherwise be sentenced to state prison.  Methadone is for people who realize on their own that they need help and have failed at other treatment modalities.  Renaissance also costs a whole lot more to administer than methadone.
How many heroin addicts are in Lebanon County? 190 known, but about 585 in the County.
But all 585 are not on methadone. Right.  It's  the same as trying to lose weight or stop smoking.  People have to want to get clean. Methadone is another tool in the tool box of treatment.
I'd rather concentrate on prevention. We also use science based prevention programs that are proven effective.
What is the success rate with methadone? The relapse rate to illicit opioid use, for patients who have withdrawn from methadone, is 80-90% after one year.  Methadone maintenance treatment does not cure opioid addiction.  Combined with appropriate psychosocial treatments, methadone can put the disease into remission.  As with all chronic diseases, when effective treatment is discontinued, the disease reoccurs (think diabetes, high cholesterol or hypertension.)
Are there any savings to the County. $25/client/week
  1. 10 County funded clients
  2. 10 projected additional County funded clients
  3. 18 medical assistance clients

(38 x $25/week = $950 weekly savings x 52 weeks =  $49,400.00 yearly plus transportation costs of $13,367.95 for a total savings of  $63,717.95.)

What about increased insurance and other costs to the county? All costs are the responsibility of the provider.
What about using methadone and then driving or using machinery? What if someone gets hurt?  Is the County liable? Researchers consistently found that methadone-when used  in the treatment of heroin addiction-has no adverse effects on a person's ability to think and function normally
Why can't we use the existing facility to provide methadone treatments? Because of confidentiality, in and out-patient clients can't mingle.
That's a laugh.  Everyone can see each other and meet on the parking lot. State regulation provides that arrivals enter in one door and leave through a different door.
I lived in a neighborhood with a methadone clinic.  People were lined up outside before opening, and drug deals took place regularly.  Will police be there to monitor activity, and at whose expense? The provider has assured us that this is not an issue at the clinics they run.  They are the largest provider in the United States.  The provider and the Lebanon County Commission on Drug and Alcohol Abuse (LCCDAA) have met with the North Cornwall Police to discuss this issue.
I thought there was a hiring freeze on at the County. Employees would be under the jurisdiction of the provider.
From where is the money coming to build this facility? One half from the State and one half from CRC, the provider.
What if all 100 spots are not used. That does not impact the County budget.  It is the responsibility of the provider.
Oh sure, then they advertise openings to bring in more drug users.  Look what happened at Lebanon Village. The first few weeks, methadone is administered daily, but then a "block" builds upon the brain that doesn't allow a person to get high on heroin, so they don't use it. At this point, a client can earn a take-home supply which reduces the number of visits to the clinic.
So where are other clients likely to come from? Northern Lancaster and Schuylkill Counties.  They don't have a clinic.
We're smaller than Lancaster.  If it's such a good idea, why doesn't Lancaster have a clinic? The provider is also in talks with Lancaster.
That's setting us up for failure.  We build, Lancaster fills the spots, then they build and their clients go to the closer clinic in Lancaster. Most of the Lancaster clients will continue to attend the clinic in Coatesville.  We anticipate that only Northern Lancaster county residents might use this clinic. 
This is a business. What happens to the building if we don't have enough of people to make it profitable? We could possibly rent it to White Deer Run for inpatient or outpatient treatment.
And what if White Deer Run doesn't want the space?  What costs are there to the County?  What do we do with the building if we can't fill the facility with Lebanon residents? I would anticipate that another provider of Methadone services would run the clinic.  LCCDAA has been approached by 2 other Methadone Clinic providers (unsolicited)  who expressed an interest in operating a clinic in Lebanon.  We have an epidemic at this time in Lebanon.  52% of the clients we treat are heroin/opiate addicts, the highest in the state.  29 have died in the last 3 years.  Or maybe we could use it for a temporary (overnight) juvenile detention center.
Is this a good idea ahead of its time? We need another tool in our tool box of treatment .
What if I agree to try this treatment facility, where would it be located. Between a sewage treatment plant, the Quittapahilla Creek, and cornfields.   In-patient clients are being treated at this facility now and have been since 1977.