Boone, Kenton & Campbell Counties Awarded Funds to Combat Heroin Epidemic

HIDTA_LogoOn March 14, 2017, the Office of National Drug Control Policy awarded  $275,000 to Boone, Campbell, and Kenton Counties as part of the three-county area’s inclusion in the Ohio High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA). Additional funds are anticipated to be released in 2018. Funds will be directed to the NKY Drug Strike Force to support law enforcement initiatives to battle illegal distribution and use of heroin across the region.

First announced on October 13, 2016, Northern Kentucky’s joining the Ohio HIDTA signals recognition that an infusion of federal resources and increased law enforcement tools will assist in the fight against the opioid epidemic here. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was critical to securing the HIDTA designation. 

“I was proud to help Boone, Kenton, and Campbell Counties receive the HIDTA designation,” said Senator McConnell. “Even then, I knew that was only the first step to achieving the goal. Now we are seeing critical resources flow to these communities to protect families. By bolstering the good work of local officials and law enforcement, these funds will help to fight the devastation caused by opioid addiction.”

 “Northern Kentucky continues to feel the impact that the opioid epidemic has had on our families and region,” said Chris Conners, Director of the Northern Kentucky Drug Strike Force. “We look forward to leveraging these additional resources, especially to be able to access new intelligence sharing tools. 

The three Northern Kentucky counties have worked in close partnership in the ongoing effort to battle the opioid epidemic.

“We must use every possible tool at our disposal to fight the opioid epidemic,” said Gary Moore, Boone County Judge/Executive. “Thanks to the efforts of many in our region, with critical support from Senator McConnell, we will now see the impact that these federal dollars can have through the HIDTA designation.”

 The opioid epidemic has had a profound effect on local government budgets, so a benefit of the HIDTA funding includes increased law enforcement activities with new, non-local dollars being used.

 “Confronting this epidemic continues to prove a challenging and critical battle for Northern Kentucky,” said Steve Pendery, Campbell County Judge/Executive. “It is taking a toll on all aspects of our local governments’ budgets, but this new funding, a direct result of Boone, Campbell, and Kenton Counties being added to the Ohio HIDTA, is yet another example of how we have worked to find sources of outside funding to assist. Thanks to Senator McConnell’s efforts, this funding will ease the burden on local taxpayers in a fight where losing is not an option.”

 The funding announcement represents another step in Northern Kentucky’s ongoing and multi-faceted approach to combatting the opioid epidemic.

 “Boone, Campbell, and Kenton Counties continue to fight on all fronts against the heroin epidemic,” said Kris Knochelmann, Kenton County Judge/Executive. “We’re appreciative of all the partners who have joined this fight to defeat an enemy that is literally destroying thousands of families in our community. Whether it be education and prevention, intervention, treatment, or law enforcement, we won’t rest until we have every tool necessary to win this battle. I specifically want to thank Senator Mitch McConnell for his key role in securing our community’s membership in Ohio HIDTA, which resulted in these critically important resources.”