H.R. 5925 authorizes appropriations for the operations of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and changes the Office’s name to the Office of National Drug Control. The legislation authorizes programs administered by the Office through 2023, including the High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas program, the Drug-Free Communities program, and the Education and Public Awareness Campaign for Emerging Drug Threats.
H.R. 5925 codifies prior authorizing legislation into a positive law chapter in title 31, United States Code. Specifically, the bill maintains the requirement for the Office to develop a National Drug Control Strategy and implements key recommendations of the President’s Opioid Commission. The bill directs the overhaul of the contents and timing of the Strategy to improve strategic focus, reduce administrative burden, and allow for continuity of mission during transition years. The bill enhances the Office’s role in interagency coordination—across the federal, State, local, and tribal levels—of the nation’s drug control efforts. The Office is provided enhanced authority to ensure National Drug Control Program Agencies are equipped with the appropriate resources to implement the Strategy effectively. The bill also provides increased transparency of the Office’s recommendations on drug control funding. The bill clarifies the Office’s responsibility to ensure national drug control policy is based on evidence and requires an annual assessment of progress made by agencies toward achieving the objectives of the Strategy.
A process is established to work with drug control partners to ensure critical information necessary to understand and combat the crisis is accessible and standardized to improve its quality and utility. H.R. 5925 calls for a comprehensive response to the opioid crisis and requires the Office to prepare a National Opioid Crisis Response Plan within 60 days after enactment with quantifiable goals and measurable objectives. Finally, the bill authorizes a national multi-platform campaign to enhance public awareness of the hazards of opioids and future threats before such threats become a national crisis.