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Sept. 25, 2012
TOPEKA Federal funds for preventing underage drinking in Kansas have been cut to a quarter of what they were last year, according to a release today by the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services, or KDADS.
Kansas will receive about $2.7 million over the next three years to prevent underage drinking in six counties, said officials at KDADS, the agency that will administer the grant. The last three-year grant was for $10 million and was distributed to 14 counties with the highest teen drinking rates in the state.
The counties to receive prevention funds are: Shawnee, Sumner, Riley, Doniphan, Jackson and Leavenworth counties.
The six counties were selected based on underage drinking rates as well as on "the capacity of the community coalitions to implement strategies in a more expedited manner," said KDADS spokeswoman Angela de Rocha.
"Consideration was also given to communities with populations that are of specific interest to the federal funder," she said, referring to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Such populations include families of active-duty and returned members of the military, tribal populations, young adults attending colleges and universities and persons of Hispanic origin, officials said.
State officials have said they were working to help communities prepare for the loss of prevention funding.
Sarah Fischer, a state prevention coordinator who administered the previous grant, said in January that communities were encouraged to find ways to continue prevention programs beyond federal funding.
"Funding is going away, but ongoing prevention efforts will be targeted at ways that we can sustain and support some of the things that have been put in place through this process," Fischer said. "It's not like our plan is to leave them high and dry by any means."
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