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March 9, 2004


351 cities and towns will receive grants to improve homeland security


Massachusetts took another important step forward in the fight against terrorism today as Governor Mitt Romney awarded more than $45 million in federal homeland security funding to help the Commonwealth’s communities identify and address security vulnerabilities.


"The threat of modern terrorism poses new challenges for law enforcement across Massachusetts and around the nation," said Romney. "These new homeland security funds will allow Bay State communities to work as a coordinated force to collect, analyze and distribute critical terrorism related intelligence and act when necessary."


Romney said the latest round of federal funding will be used to pay for training and equipment as well as planning and prevention efforts associated with homeland security across the state.


Massachusetts is one of the first states to receive funding this year from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. To be eligible to receive the funds, each state was required to submit a threat, vulnerability and risk assessment and strategy to the federal government. The Commonwealth’s plan, recognized as a national model for other states to follow, was approved last month.


"Under the Romney Administration, Massachusetts has launched one of the most aggressive and complete homeland security strategies," said Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey. "With these federal funds, the state will work closely with communities across the Commonwealth to put in place plans to prevent and mitigate terrorist activities."


The majority of the federal homeland security funds will be distributed on a regional basis according to the overall statewide strategy. Each region will establish a management structure to guide planning and the distribution of funds. The amount allocated to each region was determined based on the results of the Commonwealth’s threat, vulnerability and risk assessment.


Those funds will be distributed to the five regions as follows:


Western Region: $3,815,160

Central Region: $4,415,688

Southeast Region: $7,738,462

Northeast Region: $6,501,200

Metro Boston Region: $9,540,290

Total: $32,010,800


An additional $4.5 million in federal funds will provide a base funding amount of at least $12,000 to each city and town to help ensure they are prepared to support local homeland security investments.


Another $9 million in federal funds will enhance the state’s capacity to support anti-terrorism initiatives, bringing the total amount of homeland security funding announced today to just over $45 million.


The formula for distributing the funds to the five regions takes into account critical assets, potential threat elements and other threat information received from the federal government.


"Public safety is one of the principle purposes of government and one of our greatest responsibilities," said Public Safety Secretary Edward A. Flynn. "The funding announced today will be used to ensure that our citizens are protected and that every precautionary step that can be taken will be taken to prevent domestic and foreign terrorist attacks by those who would seek to destroy our free society."


Romney said his top homeland security priority for the Commonwealth is to enhance its ability to collect, analyze and distribute critical terrorism related intelligence and other relevant information. The federal grants will allow the state to use this information as a foundation for a multi-disciplinary, proactive approach to protecting our citizens.


Romney serves as the National Governors Association’s co-lead for homeland security and was appointed by President Bush to the Homeland Security Advisory Council.


Access Massachusetts Homeland Security Planning Regions (pdf)



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