Enforcement efforts by the Western Intelligence Narcotics Group will receive a boost in the new fiscal year with a significant Federal crime grant.
Scotts Bluff County Sheriff Mark Overman told County Commissioners Monday he received word earlier in the day the Nebraska Crime Commission had approved a Byrne Justice Assistance Grant of $116,742 for task force operations.
Overman tells KNEB News local officials saw WING’s value even though the Commission failed to approve grants for the task force the past three years. “The Chiefs and the Sheriffs had to go to their governing boards and tell them ‘We don’t have a grant anymore, but this is important’, and no one pulled out,” says Overman. “When we explain this to people, and people see what WING does, it’s very popular. And very necessary.”
Overman says the funding is earmarked for overtime for officers to combat some of the worst criminal activity, often involving illicit drugs.
With members from eight different law enforcement agencies, Overman says WING investigators can respond quickly throughout the Panhandle, providing resources to go after what he called “the worst (of) criminals and keep a lid on the worst of crime.”