After the White House singled out the Bakken oil patch as part of its national criminal drug control policy this week, Montana Attorney General Tim Fox pointed out what is already being done in the area.

"While we're gratified by the attention the White House has focused on the area," Fox said. "Rest assured that my office at the Montana Department of Justice and our fellow law enforcement agencies have been doing quite a few things for some time since I took office in January of 2013."

Fox outlined some of the initiatives his office have already put in place.

"We secured funding for two new additional division of criminal investigation agents who have been placed in the area," Fox said. "I also sent an additional five Highway Patrol troopers to eastern Montana. Also importantly, we recently created a new K-9 unit within the Highway Patrol. We now have six K-9 units who are troopers with dogs who are able to sniff out illegal drugs. Two of those units will be specifically assigned to the eastern Montana area."

While acknowledging the problems that the booming oil patch with its massive amounts of cash brings to the area, Fox praises the positive benefits of the oil patch in Montana.

'"One of the major reasons why the state enjoys a budget surplus is because of the oil and gas industry in Montana," Fox said. "You just can't overstate now that America is the largest oil and natural gas producer in the world, and we are poised to be a net exporter of energy. This is important because we now have the means to be energy independent, so that we won't have to send our energy dollars to countries who oppose the United States."

The document released by the White House says the FBI and other agencies will continue to work with state and local police on "law enforcement, quality of life, women's safety and tribal issues" in oil country.

Montana Attorney General Tim Fox