Feds Defund Meth Cleanup Program

By Dirk Hanson 03/30/11
Image: 
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Hazardous enough even when you're paid.
Photo via marcor

State police departments, overtaxed by the costs of cleaning up confiscated methamphetamine operations, are fearful that reduced funding from the Feds will force them to stop trying to bust meth labs at all. The DEA recently announced that its Community Oriented Policing Services Methamphetamine Program was--how shall we put this?--completely broke, with almost no chance of refunding in the near future. Cleanup costs for meth labs can run from $2,000 to $10,000 per site, and some sites can be as small as the back seats of cars.  "I think it will change enforcement strategy," Tony Saucedo, the meth enforcement director for Michigan State Police, told AP. "There's no way to be proactive. If we come across one (a meth lab), obviously it's going to have to be handled. You can probably bet that nobody's going to go actively looking for meth labs."

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Dirk Hanson, MA, is a freelance science writer and the author of The Chemical Carousel: What Science Tells Us About Beating Addiction. He is also the author of The New Alchemists: Silicon Valley and the Microelectronics Revolution. He has worked as a business and science reporter for numerous magazines and trade publications including Wired, Scientific American, The Dana Foundation and more. He currently edits the Addiction Inbox blog. Email: [email protected]

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