Midland Gets More Money To Fight Drug Trafficking

by Anayeli Ruiz
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - More money to fight drugs, the Federal government handed over more grant money to Midland to wipe out narcotics in your neighborhood. Despite budget cuts, this is one thing they're cutting corners in.

Four years ago, Midland joined the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program. It's a nationwide effort to reduce drug trafficking. So far, it has helped area agencies work together.

"We have mainly worked separately but we would come together in certain initiatives but a task force is bringing resources from different entities to one group to work on a common problem. That's what we have done is bring resources from local and federal agencies to work on the drug issue," Midland Police Chief Price Robinson, said.

Despite the budget cuts made across the board, this is one issue that the federal government didn't cut. They gave Midland about $168,000 to help combat our drug problem.

"Just because of our location in West Texas. The proximity to I-20 running East and West and Highway 67 from the border up North, it just made sense for the Midland and Ector County to be part of the HIDTA," Robinson said.

The money will support the Task Force which is made up from members of Midland Police, FBI, Sheriffs Office and the DEA Office in Midland. They use the money for equipment, training and overtime for their officers. So far, the money has made a positive impact on the community.

"A year ago, we had a team of officers come in here and make probably 110 arrests. That was in February of 2011. That group came back and did the same thing this past February and it really had an impact on the crime in Midland. Seeing how narcotics is tied to theft and burglary and things like that, we saw a slow down after those large arrests," Robinson said.

Midland hopes to continue to get these funds for years to come. Ector County is also part of the effort and they also received funding. Odessa police is not part of this group anymore.