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Broome County, Plagued By Fentanyl, May Soon Get Relief

Brindisi Fentanyl - spot

VESTAL, NY (WSKG) - More funding to keep fentanyl out of communities could be coming to Broome County and elsewhere if federal legislation goes into effect.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can be fatal.

New York 22nd District Congressman Anthony Brindisi is pushing for the bill. His district includes Binghamton, Norwich and Utica.

Brindisi, joined Thursday by Broome County Sheriff David Harder, said the money assists communities like Broome County that have seen spikes in fentanyl in recent months.

In March, Broome was placed under a state of emergency after 12 people died from overdoses. Many of those were due to fentanyl. The bill makes more money available to fund treatment and police programs. “There would be funding that’s authorized in this legislation to provide funding for local law enforcement who are dealing with this problem like here in Broome County," Brindisi said.

It also goes after China with sanctions. Brindisi said some legal Chinese drug companies work with traffickers to send fentanyl to the United States.

“If those companies are trying to do business in the United States and they’re working on the side with drug traffickers, this will allow our country to impose sanctions against them," Brindisi said. "So they don’t do business here anymore.”

The bill was included in both the House and Senate versions of the National Defense Authorization Act. That’s expected to pass this fall.