The Guilford County Sheriff’s Department received two grants totaling $245,500 – through the Governor’s Traffic Safety Program – to help keep drunk, drunk and distracted drivers off the road.

The first grant will provide 25 percent of the funding required for an ongoing DWI task force of five Sheriff’s Department officers, including one who will serve as a “DWI educator” for the county.

The team also includes two police officers from High Point.

According to the Sheriff’s Department, the total annual cost of this program is just over $682,000 and this is the 13th year of funding.

Both programs are primarily aimed at solving “traffic-related problems such as unrestrained drivers, children, speeding and impaired driving, and [the program] provides community education on these issues.

The funding helps pay for the salaries of task force members, as well as paying for blood alcohol test kits and training and travel expenses for members.

The second prize provides half of the funding needed to maintain two additional members of the Guilford County Multi-Agency DWI Task Force.

The total annual cost of this program is $189,440. Federal funding for second prize is $94,720, while local funds are $94,720, paid for by Guilford County. This program funds two deputy sheriff positions and other operating expenses for officers.

This is the sixth year the county has received this grant.

Fellowships will end on September 30, 2023, and fellowship-funded positions are time-limited, subject to available grant funds.

The Sheriff’s Department intends to seek additional federal funds to continue the programs and operate beyond that date.

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