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Government approves millions to fight meth in Oklahoma

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TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Almost $3 million has been approved by a federal agency to help fight methamphetamine production and use in Oklahoma.

The U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Community Oriented Policing Services said four American Indian tribes and three other organizations in the state will receive grants ranging from $364,194 to $467,618.

Recipients are the Osage Nation, the Absentee Shawnee Tribe, the Chickasaw Nation, the Seminole Nation, the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control, the Sequoyah County Sheriff's Office and the Oklahoma Police Chiefs Training Foundation.

Rep. Dan Boren, D-Okla., said sheriff's deputies in Sequoyah County recovered more meth labs than any other agency in the state in the fiscal year that ended June 30.

Boren said the federal money will help the agency combat the manufacture, use and distribution of meth and work with other agencies in the prevention and treatment of meth abuse.

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''We must fight meth on all fronts and use every tool available to us to do it,'' Boren said in a prepared statement. ''Helping rural law enforcement fight this drug in our local communities means giving them the necessary resources to stay one step ahead of the drug makers and users.

''I have always made the fight against this drug a major priority by passing anti-meth legislation, and by continuing to work for grant funding for our local law enforcement,'' Boren said.

Sequoyah County Sheriff J.W. Philpot said he appreciates Boren's efforts to help secure the funding.

''On the front lines here in Sequoyah County, we see the terrible results this drug can have on both families and communities,'' he said.

The federal money headed to Oklahoma is part of an announcement covering $49.5 million that will go to scores of law enforcement agencies in more than 35 states.