COVER STORY Gardner - Littleton Roundtable 3.jpg

U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner talks with Littleton Mayor Debbie Brinkman at a roundtable discussion at the Town Hall Arts Center on June 17.

U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner added an amendment to a broad appropriations bill passed on Thursday that increases funding to the COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program by $1 million.

“In between 2011 and 2018, Colorado has experienced a nearly 40 percent increase in the admissions for meth addiction,” said Gardner. “We have to provide new tools and resources to deal with the dangers caused by methamphetamines in our communities.”

The program provides grants to law enforcement in states with high seizures of meth and laboratories. This year, $8 million in grants were available.

Money from the initiative can go toward new civilian and sworn personnel, equipment or supplies, travel, overtime, and training — all related to anti-methamphetamine activities.

As CPR reported in August, meth possession arrests in Denver rose 217% between 2014 and 2018, and outnumbered heroin and cocaine arrests combined.

Statewide, there has been an upward trend of 100 additional deaths per year from methamphetamine for the past three years.

The U.S. Department of Justice notes that the use of methamphetamine, a stimulant that affects the central nervous system, spreads quickly to rural areas because of simple preparation and ease of access to ingredients. Foreign drug trafficking has seen an uptick following crackdowns on the domestic supply of meth.

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