ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) - After years of trying, police in Hardin County said they were happy to learn Wednesday they finally got a federal designation to help them combat drugs. It's called a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area.
Law enforcement officials in Hardin County said they deal with drug issues just like any other area. They said the HIDTA designation doesn't mean they have a bigger drug problem than most, but they want to have the resources in place so any issues they do have don't get out of hand.
From the minute you drive into Elizabethtown, it's easy to see the pride they have for their city. Even Police Chief Tracy Schiller. "It's absolutely one of the finest communities I've ever been a part of."
The same holds true for those who live in the rest of Hardin County and police here say they're adamant on keeping it that way. It's why they say took up the fight to get a HIDTA designation from the federal government.
"It gives Hardin County more resources in place to deal with the drug trafficking throughout the area," said Schiller. "Warren County has a designation, so does Jefferson County, but Hardin County which sits right between the two designated counties does not."
It's a large area on its own to fight not only the drugs that are here, but those coming up and down I-65.
"Hardin County is kind of a hub. A lot of drugs go up and down the interstate, coming into Kentucky going through Kentucky or coming into Elizabethtown," said Ron Eckart with the Greater Hardin County Narcotics Task Force.
Everyone agrees their biggest problem is meth. Last year alone the Greater Hardin County Narcotics Task Force said they opened 172 cases. That doesn't count what was dealt with by the local departments. After that, pills and pot are what they deal with day in and day out. It's something they say they can use another tool to keep down.
For Elizabethtown Police Chief Schiller, he said it will help with their new K9 Unit that will focus specifically on keeping drugs out of their beautiful town.
Schiller said they couldn't have gotten the designation without the help of Senator Mitch McConnell, U.S. Attorney David Hale, and Congressman Brett Guthrie.
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