A new report from the Montana Department of Justice released today says meth violations are up more than 500 percent in the last five years. And since 2010, heroin crimes are up more than 1,500 percent, contributing to Montana having the highest jail incarceration rate in the region.
The DOJ’s initial "Addressing the Impact of Drugs," or "AID" report provides a look into the data of Montanan’s use and abuse of alcohol and other drugs.
At a Tuesday press conference, Attorney General Tim Fox said the report provides a summary of current efforts to combat substance abuse in the state as well as information about the trend of drug offenses in Montana.
"Our report will allow us to better identify how state resources are used to target substance abuse," Fox said. "From there we will identify gaps and inefficiencies, what works and what doesn’t work, and have a more complete understating of how the state of Montana can better align efforts to enhance necessary communication and improve outcomes for those suffering from addiction."
The Attorney General’s Office will update the Law and Justice Interim Legislative Committee on the report Thursday.
Last legislative session, lawmakers passed a joint resolution to study the impacts rising meth use and illegal use of opioids and narcotics is having on the state agencies. Both the DOJ and the legislative committee hope to have a package of bills to address the issues raised in their research in the next legislative session.