Gov. DeWine awards more than $2 million to local drug task forces

Press Staff Writer

        Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced he is awarding more than $2 million in grant funding to support local law enforcement in their work to disrupt the drug trade in Ohio and enhance their role in substance use awareness, prevention, and recovery.
        Grants from Gov. DeWine’s RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund will be provided to 27 existing drug task forces – including the Ottawa County Regional Task Force – to intensify their efforts to identify high-level drug traffickers; dismantle large drug trafficking organizations; interrupt the flow of money and drugs from Mexican cartels; and prevent the sale of illegal narcotics to those suffering from substance use disorder.
        Funding will also be used to support the mission of Gov. DeWine’s RecoveryOhio initiative which aims to increase substance use and mental health awareness, implement age-appropriate prevention education in schools, connect those who need help with treatment, and promote recovery.
        “Ohio’s task force officers work day and night to identify and arrest the drug traffickers who are fueling addiction. These grants will help local authorities continue this important work, as well as expand law enforcement’s role in preventing substance abuse through prevention, education, and proactive outreach,” said Gov. DeWine.
        The Ottawa County Regional Task Force will receive $65,057.96, which will be used to hire a prevention officer to implement drug awareness and prevention programs in schools and youth organizations, implement a re-entry program to promote recovery and reduce recidivism among jail inmates approaching release; and implement training for first responders related to secondary trauma and mental health.
        A full list of award recipients can be found at The program is being administered by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services.
        Additionally, separate funding secured in the 2019-2021 biennium budget is being used in partnership with Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s Organized Crime Investigations Commission (OCIC) to create new cartel interdiction task forces and expand some existing major drug interdiction task forces.
        The Lucas-Wood Major Drug Interdiction Task Force, which previously operated only in Lucas County, will receive additional funding to work in partnership with authorities in Wood County. New task forces are in development.


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