Maryland Delegation Secures $70 Million in Regional Federal Emergency Preparedness Grants

picture of a stoplight ahead sign partially submerged in waterUS Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume, Jamie Raskin, David Trone, and Glenn Ivey announced $69,722,636 in fiscal year 2023 Department of Homeland Security preparedness grants for the State of Maryland and Capital Region.

Preparedness grants support state and local efforts to build, sustain and improve the capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate terrorism and other high-consequence disasters and emergencies.

  • State Homeland Security Program, $7,074,841 to support state and local law enforcement agencies with the implementation of state homeland security strategies to address identified planning, organization, equipment, training, and exercise needs to prevent, protect against, prepare for, and respond to acts of terrorism throughout the state.
  • Emergency Management Performance Grant Program, $6,560,623 for the Maryland Emergency Management Agency to prepare for all hazards, including natural disasters and severe weather events.
  • Urban Area Security Initiative, $3,800,000 for state administrative agencies in the Baltimore region and $50,360,095 for the National Capital Region to address the unique planning, organization, equipment, training, and exercise needs associated with preventing and responding to acts of terrorism in a high-risk, urban area.
  • Port Security Grant Program, $1,903,449 to implement Area Maritime Transportation Security Plans among port authorities and facility operators and strengthen security at Maryland ports, including the Port of Baltimore:
    • Maryland Natural Resources Police, $361,680
    • Maryland State Police, $317,041
    • Maryland Transportation Authority Police, $731,250
    • Prince George’s County Police Department, $493,478
  • Intercity Bus Security Grant Program, $23,628 to protect critical surface transportation infrastructure and riders from acts of terrorism and to increase the resilience of transit infrastructure.

“Marylanders deserve to feel safe in their communities,” said the lawmakers. “This federal funding will ensure that our first responders are better able to handle emergencies, help our communities prepare for and respond to severe weather events, and provide us with the latest tools to intervene before threats become a reality – ultimately saving lives.”

The Department of Homeland Security awarded over $2 billion in fiscal 2023 to help prepare against threats and natural disasters. Congress sets the total amount for each grant program, and the Department makes the allocations.

While a disaster always begins and ends at the local level, a strong partnership across federal, state, and local governments is vital to emergency preparedness and community resilience. This year, the General Assembly passed legislation establishing a State Disaster Recovery Fund (SDRF) to provide much-needed resources to serve residents and businesses in all 24 jurisdictions when a disaster strikes.

While the SDRF is a significant accomplishment, more work remains. At the MACo Summer Conference session “Disaster Dollars: What’s Next?, an expert panel will explain the significance of the SDRF, detail the next steps, and highlight new ideas and policies to streamline community resources in times of crisis.

The 2023 MACo Summer Conference is August 16-19, 2023, at the Roland Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland.

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference: