Monday, December 14, 2009

DHS Releases Mass Transit Security Grant Assistance

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Monday announced the release of more than $253 million in grant money available for high-risk mass transit systems. The Transit Security Grant Program is designed to assist high-risk mass transit systems with the purchase of equipment and training in order to address threats from terrorists and natural disasters. Grant applications are due February 18.

Congress appropriates money annually for emergency preparedness and critical asset protection. Security at mass transit systems, including subways and light rails, has come under scrutiny in recent months. Last week, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee heard testimony from Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary Ray LaHood and other administration heads asking Congress to give the federal government regulatory authority over state and local mass transit systems. Urged legislation, if passed, would give the DOT's Federal Transit Administration (FTA) authority to issue regulations mandating security measures for rail transit systems.

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