The $1 billion in funding will be available over four years to help state and local governments become more resilient to cyber threats.
Last week the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a first-of-its-kind cybersecurity grant program specifically for state, local, and territorial (SLT) governments across the country. This State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program provides $1 billion in funding to SLT partners over four years, with $185 million available for FY22, to support SLT efforts to address cyber risk to their information systems. With this funding, SLT governments will be better equipped to address cybersecurity risks, strengthen the cybersecurity of their critical infrastructure, and ensure resilience against persistent cyber threats for the services SLT governments provide their communities.
DHS has opened the application process for the grant program. Applicants have 60 days to apply for a grant, which can be used to fund new or existing cybersecurity programs.
The cyber grant program is an innovative program established by the State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act, part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, to help address the unique challenges state and territorial governments face when defending against cyber threats. This new grant program will help state and local partners reduce cyber risk and build resilience to the dynamic and evolving cybersecurity threat environment.
Specifically, the cyber grant program will fund efforts to establish critical governance frameworks across states and territories to address cyber threats and vulnerabilities, identify key vulnerabilities and evaluate needed capabilities, implement measures to mitigate the threats, and develop a 21st-century cyber workforce across local communities. CISA will support these efforts with a suite of available resources, including state cybersecurity coordinators and cybersecurity advisors.
The grants will significantly improve national resilience to cyber threats by giving state, local, and territorial governments much-needed resources to address network security and take steps to protect against cybersecurity risks to help them strengthen their communities. There will be two funding opportunities for this program. The funding opportunity being announced today is for state, local, and territorial governments. As part of this NOFO, local governments are eligible sub-recipients through their respective states and territories. A separate tribal grant program will be released later in the fall.