WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Susan Collins, R-Me., today announced that various entities in Maine are eligible to apply for more than $11.5 million in grant awards for Fiscal Year 2010 under programs administered by the Department of Homeland Security.

This amount marks an increase of approximately $200,000 over FY09 grant dollars. Senator Collins is the ranking Republican member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

In all, program guidance for 17 grants, totaling over $2.7 billion, will be released, said DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. The release of the grant application packages is part of the DHS’ 2010 preparedness grant program.

The grant programs include the State Homeland Security Grant Program (SHSGP), which provides funding to state and local governments for homeland security-related planning, training, equipment, and exercises. Maine is set to receive more than $6.6 million under this program.

“These funds are key to providing important prevention, protection, response, and recovery activities among first-responders in our local communities,” said Senator Collins.

“Maine’s long international border with Canada, its expansive coastline, and its proximity to major populations centers such as Boston and New York require the State to be ready for all manner of emergencies,” she said. “These range from anti-terrorism training to preparing for looming threats such as pandemic diseases and natural disasters. I am pleased with the increased level of funding in this area over last year, which will provide a significant boost to the capabilities of first-responders throughout Maine.”

In addition, the State of Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) will receive more than $3.3 million in Emergency Management Performance Grant funding. And under the Port Security Grant Program, Portland will receive more than $1 million.

Maine will also receive more than $125,000 under the Citizen Corps Program; $200,000 under the Buffer Zone Protection Program, and $267,000 under the Interoperable Emergency Communications Program, created as part of homeland security legislation authored by Senators Collins and Joe Lieberman in 2007.

The final dollar amount for each grant program announced today may be adjusted based on review of applications for each individual grant program.
“Continued funding of these grant programs is critical to protecting and strengthening the security of Maine’s border, coastline and ports. These funds will help prevent terrorist activity and speed recovery from both natural and man-made disasters,” said Senator Collins.

Using her leadership position on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Senator Collins has worked to enhance and sustain funding for DHS grant programs. The SAFE Port Act, co-authored by Senator Collins, increased authorized funding for the DHS Port Security Grant Program. Additionally, Senator Collins’ legislation to reform FEMA substantially increased the authorization for the EMPG program.