06.16.09

Leahy Announces $6.5 Million In New First-Responder Grants To Vermont

…Vermont To Receive Additional $125,000 For Citizen Preparedness

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced $6.52 million in new first-responder grants to Vermont.  Leahy in 2001 authored the charter for the State Homeland Security Program (SHSP), which supports state and local law enforcement efforts to prevent, identify and respond to homeland security threats.  Leahy also announced that Vermont will receive more than $125,000 in Citizen Corp Program grants.

The grants to local and state first responder units support the implementation of homeland security strategies to address the identified planning, equipment, training and exercise needs of first-responders to prevent, protect against, respond to and recover from acts of terrorism.  The Citizen Corp Program supports activities involving citizens in emergency preparedness, planning, mitigation, response and recover. 

Leahy’s all-state minimum funding formula, modified in recent years, has brought more than $87 million in grants to Vermont’s first responders since 2002.  He is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and of its Subcommittee on Homeland Security, which handled the Senate’s work in writing the appropriations bill that funds the program.  The Leahy formula ensures that smaller states like Vermont are able to participate in the program.

Leahy said, “Our first responders are a community’s lifeline in an emergency.  We count on their being ready whenever we need them, and they in turn should be able to count on support like this for the resources they need to be ready.  These funds are vital to Vermont’s readiness.”

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