State Funding Enhances Emergency Communication Networks and Improves Overall Emergency Response Effectiveness
Follows $10 Million Public Safety Answering Point Grants to Support Emergency Services Dispatching
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced $45 million has been awarded to 57 counties and New York City to enhance emergency communications across the state. This funding enables local governments to expand emergency response capabilities and enhance overall public safety operations. The 2019 Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant program supports nine Regional Communications Consortiums, which focus on improving critical emergency communications across the state, as well as coordination between counties, state and federal agencies.
"Emergency communication systems are crucial to ensuring the safety of every New Yorker, and we're always looking for the latest technology to transmit information fast in a time of crisis," Governor Cuomo said. "This funding will enhance communication networks across the state and ensure that municipalities have the resources needed to improve emergency systems and operate efficiently."
Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant
The Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant program, administered by the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, has awarded more than $500 million to 57 counties and New York City since 2010. The Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant, which is formula-based and funded by cellular surcharge revenue, allows counties to make vital improvements to systems that first responders use to communicate between one another and different regions of the state, such as land mobile radio systems.
Each county and New York City can submit applications to fund projects involving infrastructure, equipment and technology upgrades. Eligible counties can use this funding for a variety of functions, including expanding radio coverage by installing new equipment at towers and antenna sites, implementing Next Generation 9-1-1 technologies and standards, setting up communication channels among public safety radio systems, supporting the operations of public safety dispatch centers and deploying new technologies that help counties link their systems together.
This funding also supports training and exercises to promote efficient, interregional communications, cooperation and overall first responder readiness.
The fiscal year 2019 Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant awards are below:
New York City
New York State Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Patrick A. Murphy said, "Establishing clear and open lines of communication is one of the most critical pieces of any emergency response operation, and for this to happen, the proper infrastructure must be in place. Thanks to this funding, localities will be able to access the resources they need to enhance and modernize their emergency communications systems and ensure assistance is deployed to New Yorkers as quickly as possible when disaster strikes."
This announcement further builds on the state's work to assist localities in improving emergency communications. In September, Governor Cuomo announced $10 million in grants awarded to localities across the state to support emergency response operations. The 2019-2020 Public Safety Answering Point Grant allows municipalities in 57 counties and New York City to make improvements to their 9-1-1 response and emergency service dispatch operations. The annual PSAP grant allows for state reimbursement to counties for eligible public safety call-taking and dispatching expenses.
About the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services
The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services provides leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism, natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.