July 21—The Lake County Narcotics Agency received $67,500 as part of Gov. Mike DeWine’s RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund.
According to a press release from the governor’s office, DeWine announced that nearly three dozen local drug task forces in Ohio are receiving state support for their work to disrupt the drug trade and promote awareness, prevention and recovery from substance use.
More than $2.4 million in grants from the RecoveryOhio Law Enforcement Fund will be awarded to 32 existing drug task forces to help them identify high-level drug traffickers, dismantle major drug trafficking organizations, disrupt the flow of money and drugs from international cartels, and prevent the sale of illegal narcotics to those with substance use disorders, according to the release.
“Illegal drugs harm too many Ohioans every year, and these grant funds will allow the state’s drug task forces to continue their daily fight against this scourge,” DeWine said.
According to the release, the grant funding will also be used to support the mission of the RecoveryOhio initiative, which aims to increase awareness about substance use and mental health, implement age-appropriate prevention education in schools, connect those who need help with treatment, and promote recovery.
DeWine has worked in partnership with the Ohio General Assembly to secure funding for these grants in the operating budget. The program is administered by the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Justice Services.
Lake County Narcotics Agency Director Pat Hengst said it was one of three grants the department receives each year as part of a statewide task force. The funds are used to connect low-level offenders with addictions with providers as well as to promote educational tools such as computer-accessible video modules through the DREAM program.
“This is much more of a public service and community outreach grant than an application,” Hengst said. “I think this is the fifth year of the RecoveryOhio grant and it’s been a great program for us. I’d like to think we’re putting the money to good use.”