(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced today that more than two dozen local drug task forces in Ohio will receive RecoveryOhio grant funding to support efforts that disrupt the drug trade and promote substance use awareness, prevention, and recovery.
A total of $2 million in grants from Governor DeWine’s RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund will be awarded among 27 existing drug task forces 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.
Grant funding will also be used to support the mission of Governor 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.
“Local drug task forces are the first line of defense against the traffickers who are putting drugs into the hands of those battling addiction,” said Governor DeWine. “This funding will provide vital tools in the area of drug use prevention, education, and treatment that will promote effective strategies to reduce the prevalence of substance use disorders and overdoses.”
Examples of programs that will be created or expanded with RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund grants include:
- Central Ohio Drug Enforcement Task Force ($35,859.30) in Licking, Coshocton, Knox, Guernsey, Muskingum, and Perry counties will use funds to reduce the availability of illegal narcotics in the six-county region and to provide professional training and information-sharing opportunities for the task force and community partners in addiction and recovery.
- Hamilton County Heroin Task Force ($230,577.81) will use funds to expand services offered by its Quick Response Team (QRT) of social workers and counselors to include overdose hotspot outreach partnerships and programs with social service agencies.
- Lawrence Drug & Major Crimes Task Force ($60,568.94) will use funds to increase efforts in drug prevention and education as well as treatment for substance abuse disorders.
- Multi-Area Narcotics (MAN) Unit ($18,371.25) in Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Paulding, Putnam, and Williams counties will use funds to provide training by MAN Unit officers for area law enforcement, schools, county workers, retail personnel, community administrators, and public agencies for awareness of local drug trends, heroin abuse, and overdose and meth components.
- Westshore Enforcement Bureau ($42,981.62) in Cuyahoga County will use funds to support the retention of a youth prevention specialist and continue annual contracts with two separate prevention/education agencies that provide training throughout the school year on subjects such as leadership, anti-bullying, suicide, and drug addiction prevention.
Governor DeWine established the RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund to provide existing drug task forces with additional resources to intercept illegal drugs and enhance their role in substance use awareness, prevention, and recovery. Funding for these grants was awarded as part of the biennium budget approved by the Ohio General Assembly for 2020-2021. The continuance of the fund was among Governor DeWine’s priority budget items for the new biennium, and the Ohio General Assembly dedicated $5 million to the program over the 2022-2023 budget year.
A full list of award recipients can be found at www.governor.ohio.gov.
The program is being administered by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services.