Oakland County, Mi., Sheriff Michael Bouchard said his county will see a sharp decrease in the number of officers assigned to drug crime investigations because of cuts in federal money, reports the Detroit News. The reductions result from a congressional vote in late December on this year’s appropriations law. Advocates are trying to restore the funds in a supplemental money bill this year but it is not clear if that will happen, or if it does, whether it will come in time to prevent the shut down of state and local programs.
Bouchard said that in his county, “We will go from having seven people assigned to narcotic investigations to two. This is a major set-back for law enforcement and public safety as a whole.” Money from Michigan’s federal grant was used last week in a statewide sweep, dubbed “Operation Blitz.” Multi-jurisdictional teams arrested 223 people and seized 460 pounds of marijuana. It was the third such blitz, which have resulted in a total of 676 people arrested, said the Associated Press. Bouchard said he would like to see Congress shift its interest in alleged steroid and human growth hormone use in Major League Baseball and focus on funding the fight against drugs.