State Rep. White says more money needed to fight rural meth epidemic

By Steve W Stewart/KJAS - Texas State Representative James White (R-Woodville) on Tuesday morning was LIVE on KJAS and he said that the Texas Legislature needs to direct more money towards battling the methamphetamine addiction epidemic that has hit rural areas of Texas, and also mental health issues.

White’s comments came just a day after Jasper County Sheriff Mitchel Newman and several of his employees addressed the Jasper County Commissioners Court and explained to them that the department is stretched to the breaking point dealing with drugs and mental health issues, on top of a shortage of manpower and equipment problems.

Deputy Drew Broom, who serves as DARE officer and mental health deputy, said that his calls to service are increasing each day and mental health cases have become a major part of his duties.

Lieutenant Scotty Duncan, who is the department’s narcotics officer, echoed those comments and he stated that although he and other deputies are working drug enforcement as hard as they can, the growing addiction to methamphetamine, and its associated crimes, is a very serious problem.

White said over the last few legislative sessions, state leaders have increased funding each time, but he said on Tuesday that another increase is needed to keep up with the problem.

The 86th regular session of the Texas Legislature is set to convene in Austin beginning on January 8th, 2019.

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