From the Office of the Governor of Maryland:
Governor Larry Hogan today announced that Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Secretary Stephen T. Moyer was selected as vice-chairman of the Washington/Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA). This federal program, administered by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, is designed to provide resources for federal, state, and local entities to aid in combating drug trafficking by supporting and collaborating with the region’s law enforcement, treatment, and prevention partners.
“Heroin and opioid addiction is tearing families and communities apart at the seams all across our state, our region, and our nation. We need to bring all hands on deck to combat this epidemic and bring those who seek to destroy our communities to justice,” said Governor Hogan. “Steve Moyer is a demonstrated leader and I have every confidence his experience will be a tremendous asset in fighting drug trafficking in our region.”
Secretary Moyer will serve as vice-chairman for HIDTA, in addition to his leadership role at Public Safety, and he will become the chairman of HIDTA in June 2018. As secretary, he manages an agency with over 10,000 employees and $1.4 billion budget that includes the Divisions of Corrections, Parole and Probation, and Pre-Trial Release Services. Previously, Secretary Moyer served for 24 years as a Maryland State Trooper, achieving the rank of Lt. Colonel.
“The Executive Board is extremely fortunate to have Secretary Moyer, with his years of experience in law enforcement and management, step forward to provide leadership,” said Washington/Baltimore HIDTA Executive Director Thomas H. Carr. “I look forward to working with him as we tackle the drug and drug-related violence issues that confront our region.”
“I am proud to be selected to take up this challenge and combat deadly drug trafficking in our region,” said Secretary Moyer. “I look forward to working with all of our law enforcement partners to save the lives of our citizens, before it’s too late.”
Secretary Moyer’s selection comes as the region confronts an evolving opioid crisis, which has escalated with the introduction of the deadly additive fentanyl. In March, Governor Hogan declared a State of Emergency to address the drug scourge, committing $50 million in funding over the next five years for law enforcement, prevention, and treatment services.
The Hogan administration also proposed legislation, which was passed by the Maryland General Assembly during the 2017 legislative session, to increase penalties for drug dealers who knowingly sell fentanyl and its analogs, which can be more than 50 times deadlier than heroin.
Marylanders grappling with a substance use disorder can find help at BeforeItsTooLateMD.org and 1-800-422-0009, the state crisis hotline.