WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (both D-Md.) have announced more than $1,100,000 in federal funding for the Maryland State Police to combat the illegal manufacturing and distribution of heroin and other opioids. The funding, awarded through the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Anti-Heroin Task Force (AHTF) program, will be used to conduct investigations and other activities related to the unlawful distribution of heroin and prescription opioids.
“We must not allow our efforts to lapse until the opioid crisis is completely eliminated. These federal funds will help Maryland police departments to prevent these drugs from making it to our communities in the first place. It will take partnership at all levels of government, and the commitment of resources from all levels of government, to truly put an end to the problem,” said Senator Cardin.
“The opioid epidemic has left no Maryland community unscathed. And to truly combat this epidemic, we must work together on the local, state, and federal level. This funding will help our state reduce the availability of heroin and fentanyl and the unlawful distribution of prescription opioids,” said Senator Van Hollen, a member of the Budget and Appropriations Committees. “In the Senate, I will continue working to support the fight against this crisis through law enforcement and substance misuse prevention and treatment efforts.”
Administered by the DOJ’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), the AHTF program is a competitive grant program open to state law enforcement agencies with multijurisdictional reach and interdisciplinary team structures, in states with high per capita rates of primary treatment admissions. Each grant is two years (24 months) in duration, and there is no local match. Senators Van Hollen and Cardin have fought to support the COPS program, despite the Trump Administration’s repeated efforts to slash funding for these crucial grants.