Anti-drug programs see funding increase

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WASHINGTON - The High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas and Drug-Free Communities programs saw an increase in funding from fiscal year 2016 when the Fiscal Year 2017 Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill was voted out of a U.S. House committee on Wednesday.

HIDTA will now receive $3 million more than fiscal year 2016, while Drug-Free Communities will receive an additional $2 million, according to a release from U.S. Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-W.Va., a member of the Appropriations Committee.

West Virginia is part of the Appalachia High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas, or AHIDTA.

"The partnership with HIDTA is critical to the success of our law enforcement counterdrug mission," said Huntington Police Chief Joe Ciccarelli in a release. "The Huntington Police Department is fortunate to receive substantial support from HIDTA to combat the opioid epidemic the region is experiencing. HIDTA funding supports training and operational activities designed to help the Huntington Police Department make the community safer."

The bill now goes to the House for debate and to be voted on.

Original article from the Herald Dispatch.