Marijuana Bust Funding on the County's Tuesday Docket

The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office is set to receive a $110,000 grant from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration  for marijuana eradication programs for the coming fiscal year.

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors will decide at Tuesday’s meeting whether to give the Sheriff’s Office the green light to accept the money and go forth. It’s likely to happen, since they’ve approved the grant funds and collaboration for the last 14 fiscal years, according to the agenda.

The grant is anticipated to fund deputy overtime ($55,000), expendable and non-expendable equipment ($10,000), aircraft rental ($35,000), and training/travel costs (10,000)…

The sheriff’s narcotics unit has for several years at least worked out of a DEA building somewhere in Sonoma County. And I just learned that the Santa Rosa Police Department’s narcotics unit has formed a new task force, also in collaboration with the DEA. More on that later.

I’ll leave you with some stats from the Sheriff’s Office:

Year Grant award Pot plants eradicated
2005 $25,500 109,000
2006 $48,911 133,000
2007 $75,000 136,000
2008 $85,000 144,000
2009 $108,000 161,000
2010 $100,000 311,000

  • Jason Bourne

    Perhaps the feds should grant some money to the Public Defender’s Office. If they are going to bust these folks the county has a legal obligation to endure adaquate repressenataion in court for them. Considering the financial costs of getting busted they are probably broke. Fair is fair.

  • SR Watcher

    These officers are excited about the overtime that they are guaranteed! They divvy it up like it is gold….,and it is! Every new task force is a way to make more money. They should be focusing on educatiion but you won’t find that being something they care about as long as they get their overtime. Depending on how high they are in the system they can work up to 15 hours of overtime. They trade back and forth amongst each other and everyone is dedicated to making event more overtime. Why are we spending these resources to eradicate Marijuana rather than harder drugs? Oh yeah, the overtime for the officers….sad, but true. County collaborating with the SRPD….,more overtime to go around…for all of the officers.

  • x1134x

    The drug war is unwinnable, but endlessly fundable. The cartels can plant a decoy plot in a remote area in a state or national park for less than $500. The “eradication” units will spend $5,000 an hour for 3 days to pull them out with helicopters. The DEA and their efforts are defeated each and every year with the same tactics the Afghans used against the soviets.

    Alcohol prohibition’s failure has taught us everything we need to know about how to best mitigate the costs to society regarding substances: To regulate and tax the allowable, responsible, adult usage.

  • Elizabeth

    Marijuana eradication is a loosing cause and everyone knows it. Why are we bothering to waste employees time and our money on this revolving door activity? Spend a lot of money putting together a group of raiders who swoop around in expensive helicopters to peoples’ homes where they tear out their marijuana gardens…Does that make sense? It is about medical marijuana and will be thrown out of court. Don’t take the money! Spend your time on law enforcement, not this cowboy stuff.

  • Carolyn Maroney

    As long as some of that training money goes to form a local chapter of LEAP
    Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

  • Kate Brandtner

    Not against growing, not against medical use, should be legal for everyone so it isn’t such a big profit, whether for law or for growers. Greed rules. We live in a rural area and have always had neighbors growing modestly and quietly. Now big greenhouses, one is 100 feet long, dot the landscape from our high perch. Some indoors year round too. Trucks in and out all day. Blatant disregard of neighbors. Bringing strangers in to the area. Fires, guns, noise. This is what concerns us. Growers beware!

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