Drug Testing Program Saves Counties Money, Time - WBOY.com: Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Drug Testing Program Saves Counties Money, Time

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The Center for Criminal Justice Studies at Glenville State College is preparing for its first Field Investigation Drug Officer program.

The program will allow officers to test samples for marijuana without sending them to the state crime lab in Charleston.

Director Ron Taylor said the training can save counties time and money by keeping suspects in the regional jails for far shorter stays.

It can take 90 days or more for the lab to process marijuana samples, and in the meantime, it costs county commissions almost $50 per person per day to house inmates in the regional jails.

"This in turn is money that the county commissions have to pay to house these individuals. So having the FIDO officers in-county can reduce this cost on the county commissions," Taylor said.

The same program is already in use in Utah.

Taylor said that since it began there, all testing for marijuana in the state has been performed by officers in the field, and not in the lab.

The program at Glenville State will teach officers the entire process, from identifying the drug to offering courtroom testimony on their findings.

Departments that participate will also be given the materials needed to begin testing themselves at the end of the program.