Methamphetamine is a bigger problem than cocaine, marijuana, or heroin for most communities, says a a survey of law enforcement agencies in 500 counties in 45 states by the National Association of Counties reported by USA Today. Fewer than 20 percent see marijuana as the top problem.
Agencies in 70 percent of the counties said meth is driving up the number of robberies and burglaries. In the Northeast, law enforcement agencies consider heroin the No. 1 problem. The survey highlights a disconnect between what many local officials say is the biggest drug problem and where the federal government has targeted its prevention and eradication efforts–on marijuana. David Murray of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy says the Bush administration is developing a national response to the meth problem. Federal agencies are working to disrupt the supply of chemicals needed to make methamphetamine and stop the smugglers who carry it from Mexico and Canada, he says.