CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is contributing $1 million to state police in an effort to reduce the state Forensic Laboratory’s backlog of drug identification tests.

Morrisey and State Police Col. Jay Smithers announced the funding Friday.

According to a news release, the funding will help reduce the backlog and save counties millions of dollars in annual jail costs by expediting criminal trials.

“I commend Col. Smithers’ eagerness to join forces in this fight against our common enemy – drug addiction and abuse,” Morrisey said in the release. “Heroin and prescription pill abuse has killed far too many of our state’s citizens. Defeating the epidemic requires a financial commitment and the willingness to partner at all levels of government.”

This is Morrisey’s second attempt to reduce the drug test backlog. In April, he contributed $10 million to the General Fund, but his office says it was not used as requested.

“This contribution will have an impact far beyond Charleston,” Col. Smithers said in the release. “It is one that touches every state trooper, county deputy and city police officer who yearns for a swift, effective prosecution of their drug arrests.”

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