The state on Wednesday announced $4.1 million in State Homeland Security Grants for 125 projects across Kentucky. The funding supports 911 programs, mobile computers and radios, bomb detection devices and first-responder training.
“These projects will strengthen the effectiveness of our first responders as they execute their important mission of protecting Kentuckians when natural and man-made disasters strike,” Gov. Steve Beshear said in a press release from his office. “I am confident that this allocation of federal dollars has been maximized to help keep citizens safe and secure.”
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security funds are used to build and strengthen preparedness capabilities at all levels through planning, equipment and readiness activities.
Gene Kiser, acting executive director of the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security (KOHS), said local agencies submitted 303 applications totaling $28.1 million for these grants.
“It’s clear that these grants are in high demand. These approved grants will be beneficial in assisting first responders across the state,” he said.
Of the grants, 58 percent, or $2.4 million, was approved for communications plans such as alert systems, 911 projects, infrastructure, mobile data computers and radios.
Thirty percent, or $1.2 million, was approved for equipment used in bomb detection, as well as medical, protective, and search-and-rescue items.
Ten percent, or $416,500, was approved for physical security, like surveillance cameras and generators, and 2 percent, or $78,800, was approved for first-responder training.
In addition, non-discretionary grant funds provided to Kentucky by DHS include $536,386 to Metropolitan Medical Response Systems for Louisville Metro and Lexington-Fayette County, and $157,802 for the Kentucky Citizen Corps Program. The Citizen Corps Program works with communities around the state to prevent crime and respond to emergencies.
The approved grants can be viewed at www.homelandsecurity.ky.gov/gp.
Kiser said KOHS seeks to find more innovative and creative ways to reduce threats and dangers, enhance security analyses, administer the Kentucky Intelligence Fusion Center, continue cutting-edge training, protect critical infrastructure, and acquire communications and other vital equipment for first responders
Kentucky’s Homeland Security programs, administration and staffing are financed almost entirely through federal dollars.