In the past few years, there have been a tragic number of suicides in northeast Colorado. I learned that our rural youth are 30% more likely to commit suicide and two times more likely to have substance abuse problems. I also learned that there is a significant shortage of behavioral health care facilities and services in many of the counties in northeast Colorado. I aggressively brought these issues to the state legislature and the governor, questioning why funding is so disproportionate among the urban corridor and rural areas. This earned me a spot on the governor's behavioral health task force, where I have worked tirelessly for over a year to achieve transparency with the 1.5 billion dollars that is spent on behavioral health in Colorado each year. I also worked to bring funding, facilities, and services to all rural areas. This culminated in northeast Colorado receiving 2.1 million dollars in January of this year in behavioral health grants from SB 137. I also worked on a community behavioral health continuum grant program that is going to use ARPA dollars that provides 90 million dollars for behavioral health grants in Colorado.