Press Release

Rep. Cuellar, Mayor Nirenberg Announce $1.5m Federal Investment in San Antonio Homeland Security Preparedness

SA Congressional Delegation works to keep communities safe against terrorism

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Washington, May 21, 2018 | Olya Voytovich, DC Press Secretary; Leslie Martinez, District Press Secretary (Olya Voytovich 202-226-1583; Leslie Martinez (956) 725-0639) | comments

WASHINGTON— Today, Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) and San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg announced that the City of San Antonio will receive a $1.5 million federal investment for fiscal year 2018 from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to expand and improve homeland security preparedness.

The funds are part of the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) and are specifically geared to address the unique planning, organization, training and equipment of urban areas that are at high risk for acts of terrorism. It improves regional response capabilities by providing crucial training, equipment, and certification for first responders. In Texas, only San Antonio, Houston and Dallas received these UASI funds.

The UASI program is funded through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security section of the Fiscal Year 2018 Omnibus Appropriations Act and is a half million-dollar increase from FY17. Congressman Cuellar serves on the Appropriations Homeland Security Subcommittee where he continues to advocate and secure funding for San Antonio.

“The Urban Areas Security Initiative has a proven track record for providing first responders the support, training and tools needed to respond to terrorist attacks and other disasters,” said Congressman Cuellar. “San Antonio is the largest city in my district, and a signature city of Texas and the United States. As a member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, I worked hard to secure funding that will increase response capabilities by providing crucial training, equipment, and certification for our first responders who work tireless every day to protect our way of life.”

Congressman Cuellar continued, “I would like to thank Former Homeland Security Subcommittee Chairman John Carter and Ranking Member Lucille Roybal-Allard for their assistance in including these funds in FY18 and for increasing the UASI program by $25 million dollars nationwide. I would like to recognize the San Antonio Delegation— Reps. Lamar Smith, Lloyd Doggett, Joaquin Castro, and Will Hurd for their leadership on this issue. I would also thank San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg, City Councilman members including Rey Saldaña for visiting with FEMA during the city’s trip to Washington, D.C. Lastly, I thank our first responders and the Southwest Texas Fusion Center for working with me on this important matter. This combined effort is a great investment for our first responders and a necessary step in increasing efficiency of our regional response capabilities.”

San Antonio Mayor Nirenberg said, “This award is an important recognition that San Antonio has unique security needs and our law enforcement community is cutting-edge. We’re particularly happy to have received USAI grants two years in a row, and I especially want to thank Congressman Cuellar for his invaluable leadership. We also are grateful to Congressman Hurd and the rest of our delegation.”  

Eligibility for additional programs in San Antonio include:

Transit Security Grant Program

In FY18, the San Antonio Area VIA Metropolitan Transit is eligible to apply for the Transit Security Grant Program (TSGP) which provides $88 million nationwide to the Nation’s High-Threat Urban Areas for enhancement of security measures at critical transit infrastructure including bus, ferry, and rail systems. The intent of the program is to competitively award grant funding to assist transit systems in obtaining the resources required to support transit safety preparedness.

Nonprofit Security Grant Program

In addition to the Urban Area Security Initiative, San Antonio is eligible to apply for the FY2018 Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP- Urban Area). This program provides $50 million dollars nationwide in funding to support physical security enhancements and activities to nonprofit organizations that are at high risk of terrorist attack and located within one of the specific UASI-designated Urban Areas.

IBSGP Eligible Urban Areas

San Antonio is also eligible to apply for the FY18 Intercity Bus Security Grant Program (IBSGP), which provides $2 million nationwide to owners and operators of intercity bus systems to protect traveling public from acts of terrorism on transit infrastructure by providing necessary resources to develop and implement security measures.

State Homeland Security Program

The State of Texas will receive $20 million dollars under the State Homeland Security Program (SSP). Funds are used to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from acts of terrorism and other catastrophic events. These funds are sub awarded to local law enforcement agencies to purchase equipment, conduct trainings and exercises to ensure our first responders have the most up to date training and equipment.

For more information on the UASI program, visit https://www.fema.gov/homeland-security-grant-program.

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