Grayson and Carroll counties to get federal help to fight drugs

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INDEPENDENCE (WSLS 10) - Carroll and Grayson counties received a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area designation from the federal government.

This will allow the Twin County Drug Task Force to receive extra funding to help fight the problem.

Officers say perhaps the most important boost this will provide is overtime money. They say often drug officers will spend well more than 40 hours a week on cases, which means they must take more time off down the road. That can hinder the flow of investigations.

The money will also be used to purchase more equipment, and will help the team collaborate further beyond city and county lines.

Grayson County Sheriff Richard Vaughan said, "Our drug dealers have no boundaries. They're trafficking drugs into Carroll, Wythe, North Carolina. Grayson County here, we border North Carolina to the south, we border Tennessee to the west. We're 450 square miles, and we just don't have the resources to adequately fight the war on drugs."

The designation lasts for one year at a time. The Twin County area has been working to get the designation for about five years.