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Impaired driving is focus of CHP grant distribution

Officials with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) announced more than $25 million in grant funding to 102 California law enforcement agencies, crime laboratories, local government agencies, and nonprofit organizations to help address the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

The grants unveiled on July 1 are the result of Proposition 64, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which tasked the CHP with administering grants for education, prevention, and enforcement programs to help communities combat impaired driving. Money is also available to crime laboratories conducting forensic toxicology testing. Funding for the grants comes from a tax on the sale of cannabis and cannabis products sold in California.

“The substantial increase in the amount of grant funds being dispersed this year to even more recipients will help make California’s roadways safer for all who use them,” said CHP Commissioner Sean Duryee. “The funds will be allocated to enhance traffic safety by educating the public about the dangers of impaired driving, conducting enforcement operations to remove impaired drivers from the roads, and advancing research on this critical issue.”

Eighty-two recipients of law enforcement grants will use funds to address impaired driving within their communities. In addition to traditional impaired driving enforcement, funds will also be used for drug recognition evaluator training to enhance their respective agency’s ability to detect drug-impaired drivers. Additionally, funding will allow for public outreach campaigns, including educational presentations and community events.

Locally, both the San Joaquin and Stanislaus County sheriff’s departments received law enforcement grant funds through the program, with the funding for fiscal year 2024-25, which began July 1.