WASHINGTON – Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Joe Lieberman, ID-Conn., Wednesday said Connecticut will receive more money overall from federal homeland security grants in Fiscal Year 2007 than it did in FY 2006. Although the state will lose funding from two traditional homeland security grants, it has won a significant level of funding to promote interoperable radio communications for first responders.
“This year, Connecticut fares well,” Lieberman said. “Although the state’s share of homeland security grant money from the two largest programs continues to decline due to a variety of factors, including less money in the overall kitty, we will be able to improve communications among police, firefighters, and emergency medical workers across jurisdictional and service boundaries. This has been and will continue to be a top priority for all first preventers and responders.”
According to the Department of Homeland Security, Connecticut will receive $13 million from the Public Safety Interoperable Communications grant program. It will also get $10 million in funding for the State Homeland Security Grant Program and the Law Enforcement Terrorist Training Program – a 23 percent decline from last year’s level of $13 million.
Connecticut is one of 38 states to see decreased funding from these two programs this fiscal year. But the interoperable communications money more than makes up for the SHSGP and LETTP program losses.
For the past three consecutive fiscal years, the total pot of money for the SHSGP and LETTP grant programs has decreased.
The state did not qualify for another important grant program – the Urban Area Security Initiative – because no single city met the requirements for eligibility.