The state “drug czar” could lose his job if Democrats get their way.
The Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy was established in 1990 to coordinate the state’s drug-fighting efforts and the person appointed to head the agency is often called the state’s drug “czar.”
While Republican presidential candidates have called for getting rid of all the “czars” in President Obama’s administration, it is Democrats in the state senate who are pressing to get rid of the “czar” over drug policy at the state level. Senator Jeff Danielson, a Democrat from Cedar Falls, says shifting the responsibilities to the Departmsnts of Public Health and Public Safety is more efficient.
“We cut middle management and overhead,” Danielson says. “And we still allow the Iowa Department of Public Health and the Department of Public Safety to have some staff left over to help with continuity of those programs.”
The change would save the state budget close to a third of a million dollars.
Republicans in the U.S. House are trying to get rid of “czars” in the Obama Administration, including the nation’s “drug czar” who is head of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. A spokesman for Republican Governor Branstad says Branstad hasn’t seen the proposal to get rid of the state drug czar and can’t comment on the idea.