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Supervisors approve homeland security grant application

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors approved a resolution for an application to the state Office of Homeland Security for $7,873,102 of Homeland Security Grant Program funding.

The supervisors’ November 18 vote also authorized the county’s Office of Emergency Services to execute the grant agreement.

The grant would provide $7,551,881 under the State Homeland Security Program and $321,221 through the Metropolitan Medical Response System program.

The Office of Emergency Services had submitted the application to the Office of Homeland Security on August 29, but adoption of a resolution is necessary before the funds can be awarded.

The State Homeland Security Program supports the implementation of state homeland security strategies to address the identified planning, equipment, training, and exercise needs to prevent or respond to acts of terrorism.

The Metropolitan Medical Response System grants enhance the Metropolitan Medical Strike Team’s ability to sustain an integrated and systematic mass casualty incident preparedness program which would enable an effective response during the first hours after an incident.

Although the purpose of the grants is to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from terrorist incidents the additional equipment, training, and planning can also be used by emergency responders for other catastrophic events.

The funding will cover eight projects.

The program to enhance catastrophic incident planning, response, and recovery operations will receive $2,440,456; the Office of Emergency Services will use $2,120,718 to strengthen communications capabilities; the county will see homeland security exercise, evaluation, and training programs funded for $1,497,965; enhancing the protection of critical infrastructure and key resources will consume $816,456 of the grant; strengthening medical and public health preparedness will be funded with $392,678 of the money; enhancing agriculture, food systems, and animal health preparedness accounts for $169,900 of the grant money; $115,789 will be used for citizen preparedness and participation; $82,947 will cover information sharing, collaboration capabilities, and law enforcement investigations; and $236,193 was allotted for management and administration.

The County of San Diego is not required to provide a local match for the grant money.

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