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In 1995, the City of Lakewood entered into an Intergovernmental Agreement with the cities of Wheat Ridge, Golden, Arvada, the Jeffco Sheriff’s Office and First Judicial District Attorney’s Office to create the West Metro Drug Task Force (WMDTF).

Now, the City of Arvada is withdrawing from the WMDTF, necessitating changes in the IGA, which were approved by Lakewood City Council on Feb. 14.

In addition to reflecting the departure of Arvada, the amended IGA details changes in some of the ways the WMDTF does business.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office will now be the Financial Host for the WMDTF, including management of the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) grant, formerly managed by the Lakewood Police Department. All financial matters related to the operation of the West Metro Drug Task Force will be managed by Jefferson County.

By participating in the IGA, each party agrees to aid and assist the other parties by permitting law enforcement personnel and equipment to be used in conducing overt and covert investigations of criminal activity in the jurisdiction of any of the the other parties. Some of the crimes participants might be called to investigate include trafficking of illegal drugs or alcohol, money laundering, fencing stolen property, gambling, prostitution and other vice offenses. According to the IGA, parties to the agreement may also be called on in instances when covert investigation procedures are needed in the jurisdiction served by one party which are in the common interest of the law enforcement agency of each party.

Lakewood’s resolution to approve the amended IGA said the WMDTF has proven beneficial in the prevention of and prosecution of large-scale drug trafficking in the Jefferson County Region.