DHS announces nearly one million dollars in bus and transit security grant awards in the Northwest to protect bus and light rail systems

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National Press Release
Thursday, October 19, 2006

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today an $800,000 grant to Portland, Oregon’s TriMet to improve rail security and a $150,000 grant to Vancouver, Washington’s C-TRAN to improve intercity bus security.  These awards are part of $136 million in grants to cities across the nation to protect transit systems and the traveling public, and are in addition to a $1.2 million CCTV grant awarded by TSA to Portland International Airport (PDX) and three TSA certified K-9 teams recently announced for TriMet.

The Transit Security Grant Program (TSGP), which is part of the Department’s Infrastructure Protection Program (IPP), strengthens the nation’s ability to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies that could impact this country’s critical infrastructure.  

“TSA is pleased to partner with TriMet, C-TRAN and PDX to add key security features that will enhance their already robust safety and security programs,” said Oregon’s Transportation Security Administration Federal Security Director Mike Irwin.  “CCTV and K-9 teams are visible deterrents that will make a significant difference in protecting transit and airport passengers.” 

“This $800,000 grant will help us strengthen security for our expanding bus and MAX light rail system,” said TriMet General Manager Fred Hansen. “With these funds, we will add cameras to the downtown Portland Mall bus stops and along the I-205 MAX.” 

“C-TRAN’s portion of the grant will enhance security by allowing us to install surveillance cameras at transit centers,” said Lynn Halsey, C-TRAN’s Director of Operations.

The TSGP utilizes a two-tiered, risk-based approach that focuses on high risk and high consequence transit systems.  In July, DHS announced $123 million in funding to Tier 1 urban areas, which are comprised of high passenger density and rail systems with significant infrastructures, such as underwater tunnels and stations and ferry systems. Urban areas that received funds in previous years, but were not eligible in Tier 1, qualified to apply and compete for TSGP Tier 2 funds.

TSGP Tier 2 allocations, totaling $13 million, place a strong emphasis on the prevention and detection of Improvised Explosive Devices.  Eligible Tier 2 transit systems were also permitted to focus on other priorities, including emergency drills, employee training, and public awareness programs that support overall system preparedness.

This year, nearly $400 million has been allocated for IPP programs.

Infrastructure protection grants considered threat, vulnerability and consequences, and recognize the unique characteristics of our nation’s seaports, transit systems and other critical infrastructure assets.  Since its inception, the IPP has awarded more than $1.5 billion to critical infrastructure sectors.

For information on allocations, please visit www.dhs.gov.