$151M in homeland security funds earmarked for NYC, LIBy Anthony M. DeStefano
December 9, 2009
The federal government has earmarked more than $151 million in homeland security grants for New York City and Long Island, officials said Tuesday.
The cash, part of a special security grant program run by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, is allocated for the city and Long Island in the current 2010 fiscal year.
"It is not totally official, these are projected numbers but we have been told this is what they [DHS] think it will be," Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) told Newsday Tuesday.
Senator Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) disclosed the funding level in a statement and said "New York City and Long Island have extensive security needs and the burden shouldn't be placed on taxpayers."
The New York City area grant amount is part of an overall $1.8 billion funding program revealed Tuesday. New York City and Long Island are considered to be one of 10 large urban areas at high risk of a terrorist attack.
King said the fiscal year 2010 funding level represents an increase over the city's fiscal 2009 award of $145.1 million. The money will be used in the city and on Long Island for training and equipment in anti-terror activities, he said. Some salary expenses will also be covered, said King.
At least $40.3 million of the fiscal 2010 money for New York City must be used for training and activities designed to prevent terror attacks, government records show. The increases are making it easier for law enforcement officials and emergency preparedness agencies to plan for additional expenditures, King said.
"Having said that, it is never enough, the city never gets back all that it spends on counterterrorism," said King.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the money helped the NYPD protect the city from attack. "We put every dollar of homeland security funding we receive to good use," he said, referring to the recent arrest of a Colorado man on charges he plotted to kill Americans with homemade bombs.
Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy said the county would use the money for operations, including cybersecurity, critical infrastructure protection and radiologic and nuclear detection. Officials with the Nassau County Police Department weren't able to respond late Tuesday to a request for comment.
It was unclear Tuesday how the money will be divided up between the city and Long Island. One city law enforcement official who asked not to be named said 20 percent is expected to go to New York State for administrative costs. A spokesman for Schumer said it will be up to the city, Nassau and Suffolk counties to make presentations to the governor's office about how the money would be spent.