WASHINGTON – Senators Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Joe Lieberman, ID-Conn., announced Wednesday that Connecticut will receive more than $1.3 million in port and transit security grants from the Infrastructure Protection Program within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Bridgeport will receive $869,181, New London, $296,250, and New Haven, $45,703 in port security grant funding. New Britain will receive $129,892 and Rocky Hill $14,163 in grants for bus security. Connecticut will also participate in a $61-million transit security grant program for the New York City metropolitan area.
“Port and transportation security are critical to protecting Connecticut and the rest of our nation,” Dodd said. “These grants will help improve detection of dangerous materials and deal with potential threats. I am pleased that the Department of Homeland Security has provided Connecticut with a much-needed increase in funding for these crucial activities, and hope that we can continue to work with our neighbors to ensure the security of all of our citizens.”
“These grants are essential to strengthening the security of Connecticut’s ports and public transportation systems. The port security grants for Bridgeport, New London and New Haven will help keep dangerous materials out of the country. The bus security grants for New Britain and Rocky Hill will help with screening, explosives detection, and disaster-response exercises so that the citizens of Connecticut can travel peacefully and safely,” Lieberman said. “I also urge New York and the Metropolitan Transit Authority to work closely with Connecticut Department of Transportation officials to make sure that the entire region’s shared transit system, including those portions that run through Connecticut ,are adequately secured through the transit security grant that will go to the tri-state area.”
The funding for Bridgeport, New London and New Haven is part of the federal Port Security Grant (PSG) Program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). This year’s port security grants for Connecticut total $1,211,134 – a nearly 83 percent increase over last year’s funding level. The grants are intended to help protect critical infrastructure from terrorism, especially explosives and non-conventional threats that would seriously disrupt commerce and cause a significant loss of life.
The grants for New Britain and Rocky Hill are part of the Intracity Bus Security Grant Program (IBSGP) also administered by FEMA. The grants are used for explosives detection, passenger screening, bus facility security improvements, and better communications among vehicles.