Saturday, February 15, 2003

State gets $8 million for new drug initiative

The Associated Press

LEXINGTON - U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers announced Friday that he has secured $8 million for a new drug initiative in southern and eastern Kentucky.

The grant program will focus on three points: creating regional drug task forces by pooling resources for interdiction, confiscation and undercover programs; establishing drug treatment programs; and expanding drug education and awareness programs.

The project will be operated out of the Center for Rural Development in Somerset, according to a statement Friday.

Rogers, (R-Ky.), also announced on Friday that he has obtained an additional $7.5 million for a prescription drug monitoring program. The money will fund grants for states looking either to create a monitoring program or upgrade an existing program.

Rogers also said Friday that another $13 million in federal funding will be used to eliminate tollbooths on the Daniel Boone and Cumberland parkways in southern and eastern Kentucky.

The funding relieves a large portion of Kentucky's parkway burden and will allow the state to refinance its bonds at a lower rate. Kentucky currently owes $26 million in bonds for all the toll roads in the state, Rogers said.

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