Mayor Sharon Pratt Dixon intends to abolish the city's Office of Drug Control Policy, which was supposed to direct the city's war against illegal drugs but has been criticized as ineffective by D.C. Council members and community leaders.

Dixon told reporters and editors of The Washington Post yesterday that she considers the office to be duplicative and plans to eliminate its five positions as part of a general effort to scale back spending in the mayor's office.

"I think {the office's activities} can be done through other existing operations, rather than creating another layer to do that," Dixon said.

Dixon aides said later that four people will lose their jobs as a result of the mayor's action, including the office's current head, Cynthia Harris. They said the fifth employee has been reassigned to another post in the government.

The move will save the government $170,000, the aides said.

The employees will be given notice in the next two weeks, they said. Harris was unavailable for comment.

The office of the "anti-drug czar" was created two years ago by Mayor Marion Barry as an analogue to the federal drug policy office first filled by William J. Bennett. It was supposed to be headed by a Cabinet-level official with broad power to coordinate agency efforts to deal with the District's mounting homicide rate and other drug-related problems.

The first head of the city's office was former D.C. Council chairman Sterling Tucker, who formed several committees of civic leaders to devise strategies for coping with the drug crisis. He also initiated several programs in which the city sought to clean up drug-torn neighborhoods, such as Valley Green in Southeast, and create citizen patrols to drive out drug dealers.

But many of the initiatives withered because of the city's budget crisis, and after Tucker resigned last summer, the office lapsed into virtual anonymity.

Several council members applauded Dixon's move yesterday, describing the drug control office as a waste of government resources. In addition to the salaries, the office has been paying more than $100,000 in rent annually for office space at 717 14th St. NW, sources said.

"It was an ill-conceived idea because the person didn't have any real authority," said council member William Lightfoot (I-At Large).

"We don't need a drug czar," council member H.R. Crawford (D-Ward 7) added. "It is a position that is not necessary . . . . {Cutting the office} certainly makes more sense than furloughing council members." The council voted Tuesday to furlough each member of the council and all of its 172 employees for 10 days.

Dixon cited the abolition of the anti-drug czar's office as an example of her efforts to cut the budget in the mayor's office. She contrasted the action with Council Chairman John A. Wilson's proposal this week to furlough council members and their staffs.

While Dixon said Wilson was making a "good-faith effort" to cut the council's budget, she said her own budget cuts -- including slicing her security detail in half -- were more significant.

"We're making permanent cuts," Dixon said. "Ours is not a one-time furlough."

Dixon also reiterated her campaign pledge to reduce the city's homicide rate by the end of 1991. She said she was placing high hopes on a proposal to expand youth recreational activities such as midnight basketball.

"That won't be the answer alone, but I think it would have . . . a very positive impact on reducing some of the homicides and the homicide rate in the District of Columbia," she said.

Dixon also said that the police department will not be exempt from her effort to cut management bloat from the D.C. government. While she stopped short of endorsing the Rivlin Commission's recent call for cutting 1,600 positions from the police force, she said she intends to explore proposals to redeploy officers from administrative positions to the street.