FEMA opens grant period

Police, fire and emergency response agencies can look to the Federal Emergency Management Agency for a share of $34 million in grants to buy security-related IT applications, video surveillance tools and interoperable communications equipment.

The grants come from the agency's fiscal 2007 Commercial Equipment Direct Assistance Program. The application period opens April 25 and closes May 29. The grants are competitive and must be consistent with state homeland security strategies.

FEMA has distributed nearly $70 million in grants since the program's creation in fiscal 2005, according to an agency announcement. Local agencies spend the money on equipment and training, including thermal imaging, night vision and video surveillance tools; information technology; and risk management tools. The program also allows agencies to use the grants for communications equipment, chemical and biological detection tools and personal protective equipment.

The program's goals are to strengthen regional response, mutual aid and interoperable communications capabilities across the nation.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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