State Senator Pam Helming today announced millions in grant awards to the six counties she represents to enhance emergency communications for police, fire, and EMS first responders. This funding will help local first responders expand their ability to communicate and respond more quickly to emergencies.
“At a time when natural disasters and emergency situations are becoming increasingly frequent and more severe, it is more important than ever that we do all we can to support our local law enforcement and first responders. Providing our counties with the necessary resources and most modern communication technology will allow them to respond as quickly as possible and will help keep our first responders safe as they do their work. These awards will help counties offset emergency radio upgrade expenses, saving local taxpayers money. Additionally, this funding will support critical upgrades in call-taking and dispatching technology such as text messaging and improved GPS for emergency response. As State Senator, I will continue to fight every day to ensure that our first responders have the tools and support they need to keep our communities safe,” Senator Helming said.
The program has allowed counties to make vital improvements in the way first responders can communicate between each other and different regions of the state using mobile radio systems. Counties can use this funding for a variety of functions – from expanding radio coverage, to implementing Next Generation 911 technologies and standards, to consolidating emergency services dispatch centers, among other services to promote efficient communications, cooperation, and overall first responders’ readiness.
2017 State Interoperable Communications Grant awards are below:
- Cayuga County – $778,135
· Ontario County – $682,338
· Monroe County – $1,727,572
· Seneca County – $441,439
· Tompkins County – $704,439
· Wayne County – $541,839
Additionally, counties across Senator Helming’s District have been awarded funding for emergency call centers. Public safety facilities, known as PSAPs, receive incoming calls for help and initiate dispatching of emergency services. The Public Safety Answering Points Grant, administered by the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, allows for state reimbursement to counties for eligible public safety call taking and dispatching expenses.
2017 Public Safety Answering Point Grant awards are below:
- Cayuga County – $202,548
· Ontario County – $198,524
· Monroe County – $$231, 492
· Seneca County – $180,736
· Tompkins County – $148,478
· Wayne County – $146,239
These grant awards are part of the $45 million that State Interoperable Communication Grant contributed to local governments and an additional $10 million to localities contributed by Public Safety Answering Points Grant.