DHS unveils infrastructure protection grants

The Homeland Security Department will distribute $844 million in grants for security at ports, transit, trucking and bus systems, a 29 percent increase compared to last year's allocation, officials said in a press release.

DHS' Infrastructure Protection Activities program will allocate the congressionally authorized funds to state, local and private agencies and authorities. Top priorities for this year include communications, information sharing, regional cooperation and safeguards against attacks from improvised explosive devices, DHS officials said.

In past years, a significant portion of the grants has paid for information technology-related contractor goods and services, including communications systems, computer networks and software, detection and intrusion protection, credentialing and identity management, perimeter alarm systems and surveillance systems.

The grants programs are:
  • $388.6 million for the Port Security Grant Program ? supports access control and credentialing, protection against improvised explosive devices and disaster-response drills.
  • $380.1 million for the Transit Security Grant Program ? supports sustainable efforts to protect against threats, especially explosives.
  • $48.5 million for the Buffer Zone Protection Program ? supports security at chemical facilities, financial institutions, nuclear plants, dams, stadiums and other facilities.
  • $25 million for the Intercity Passenger Rail Program ? supports Amtrak efforts to protect tunnels, train employees and expand visible deterrence activities.
  • $15.5 million for the Trucking Security Grant Program ? a single competitive grant to support participant identification and recruitment, planning, training, communications and information analysis and distribution.
  • $11.2 million for the Intercity Bus Security Grant Program ? supports explosive device prevention and detection, training and preparedness, deterrence exercises and activities, and vulnerability assessments and security plans.
  • $4.9 million for the Freight Rail Security Grant Program ? provides funding to railroad operators that transport security-sensitive materials through high-population areas. Money primarily support vulnerability assessments, security plans and training.

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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