Friday, July 8, 2011

The ins and outs of funding the drug war in Mendocino's tight economy

So I'm looking at my local newspaper and see the following headline: County recognized as significant drug trafficking area.

Now exactly why Mendocino County would be so recognized, I can't imagine.
Anyway the wording "recognized as" somehow seems like something related to an honor. Well maybe it's not an honor, but it may be handy. According to the story, the Sheriff says:
The HIDTA Program can provide assistance to Mendocino County in assessing regional drug threats; designing strategies to focus efforts that combat drug trafficking threats; developing and funding initiatives to implement strategies; facilitating coordination between Federal, State and local efforts; and improving our overall effectiveness and efficiency of drug control efforts.
So apparently we are part of this program and in the company of others around the nation according to this map:

This is very timely because according to this article the new California state budget will cut $35.8 million out of the State Department of Justice law enforcement budget next fiscal year and another $35.2 million in the year after that, probably resulting in the loss of $40 million in matching federal funds over the next two years. This could cause the loss of up to 600 law enforcement positions and eliminate the bureau of narcotic enforcement and the bureau of investigations and intelligence.

Hopefully whatever the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office loses in Governor Jerry "Moonbeam" Brown's budget will be replaced by President Obama Administration's new push to go after medical marijuana. I'm not sure how it will work since Mendocino County licenses medical marijuan growers, but somehow the money will flow.

And the overall governmental craziness continues as we join with Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Marin, Monterey, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Sonoma counties in participating in this program.

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