ALBANY, NY (03/29/2012)(readMedia)-- Jerome M. Hauer, Commissioner of the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES), today announced the allocation of $1.4 million in federal Homeland Security Grant Program funds for the State's 12 local, FBI-accredited bomb squads.
"Preventing terrorism is one of New York State's highest priorities," Hauer said. "These funds will help provide the State's certified bomb squads with training and equipment to improve their ability to identify, locate, and safely dispose of explosive devices."
Between 2006 and 2010, DHSES provided $5.4 million in direct funding for local FBI-accredited bomb disposal units in New York State through the Bomb Squad Initiative. Funding for the Bomb Squad Initiative, made available through the 2010 State Homeland Security Program (SHSP), allows squads across the State to develop response plans, acquire advanced equipment, receive training, and conduct exercises.
Over the past several years, New York State has coordinated with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office for Bombing Prevention to conduct detailed capability assessments of all of the bomb squads in the State. The findings from these assessments helped drive local bomb squads' funding requests under the 2010 Bomb Squad Initiative.
DHSES recently sponsored the annual Bomb Squad Symposium, held February 27-29 in Saratoga Springs. This symposium brought together local, state, federal and international bomb technicians to share lessons learned and best practices, to receive training, and to reinforce partnerships. At the symposium, squads also updated their capability assessments to enhance their funding requests. In addition, regional meetings were held with bomb squads last fall to review regional risks and capabilities, and to develop a prioritized spending plan for these funds.
Under this program, the following jurisdictions were awarded funding specifically for their squads: