As part of the Department's commitment to enhance security at our nation's key ports and facilities, Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge is pleased to announce $49,429,867 in the fourth round of port security grants.
The Port Security Grant Program provides resources for projects to improve dockside
and perimeter security that is vital to securing our critical national seaports. These awards will contribute to important security upgrades such as surveillance equipment, access controls to restricted areas, communications equipment, and the construction of new command and control facilities. This grant program represents one layer of the Department of Homeland Security's system of defenses for our nation's ports that includes monitoring the people, cargo and vessels entering our ports from the time they leave a foreign port to the time they arrive in the United States.
"The Department of Homeland Security is committed to further securing our nation's maritime system, which is vital to our nation’s economic well-being as the avenue for international trade and commerce," said Secretary Ridge. "These projects are critical to the mission of securing our ports."
"Each year, millions of people, vessels and pieces of cargo pass through our nation's ports," said C. Suzanne Mencer, Executive Director of the Department of Homeland Security's Office for Domestic Preparedness. "These grants help protect our ports of entry and ensure the uninterrupted flow of global commerce."
The Office for Domestic Preparedness, Transportation Security Administration, Customs and Border Protection, the United States Coast Guard, and the Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration evaluated this round of port security grant applications and selected 154 award recipients across the nation.
In addition to this round of awards totaling $49 million, the Department of Homeland Security awarded $92 million in June 2002, $168 million in July 2003, and $179 million in December 2003 as part of the Port Security Grant Program, and $75 million from the Urban Area Security Initiative for port security in August 2003.