Murray Announces Significant Funding in Senate Bills to Fight Meth Labs in Washington State

Jul 16 2002

Funding for law enforcement efforts will help keep communities safe

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) today announced that she has secured $3.5 million for law enforcement efforts to fight methamphetamine labs in Washington State in the fiscal year 2003 Commerce, Justice, State and the Judiciary (CJSJ) Spending bill.

A member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Murray levied her position to secure the money for Washington State, which is second in the nation in number of methamphetamine labs.

In last year's Senate CJSJ bill, Murray secured $2.1 million for Washington state's efforts to fight meth labs.

"One of the gravest threats facing our communities is the explosion of methamphetamine labs across the state," Senator Murray said. "This funding will help law enforcement in its fight against this terrible drug."

The number of methamphetamine labs has doubled annually since 1998 in Washington State. The state is working to combat the problem through an intensive and pro-active approach that coordinates the efforts of local, state and federal entities as well as private and nonprofit organizations.

The Washington State program incorporates intelligence, enforcement and prosecution, community education and family treatment services in an effort to eliminate methamphetamine labs from local communities.

"This critical funding will help make our communities safer by supporting the resources and staff needed to crack down on meth labs across Washington State," Senator Murray said. "Washington State families are concerned about the safety of their children and neighborhoods, and this funding will provide the resources to fight this growing epidemic."

The fiscal year 2003 Treasury and General Government appropriations bill, which passed out of the full Appropriations Committee today, includes $226.4 million requested by Senator Murray for High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA), a $20 million increase from last year.

HIDTA is a federal program aimed at combating drug trafficking in areas of the country that experience high levels of drug use and distribution. Senator Murray has consistently supported funding for HIDTA.