California Ports Reap $28.5 Million in Security Funds
Los Angeles, Long Beach pick up the biggest slice of the pie pulling in $19 million of the state's total share.
WASHINGTON, DC - California ports and terminals facilities have been allocated $28.5 million in federal money for port security.
The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles will receive the largest piece of the pie - nearly? $19 million - to "upgrade and augment current security measures," according to the Department of Homeland Security.
"We know that true maritime security demands that government and industry work together, which is why we are continually collaborating with industry, states and local authorities to secure our ports and water ways,' Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said in a prepared statement.
The San Francisco Bay ports of San Francisco and Oakland received $3.4 million and $1.6 million, respectively, while smaller niche ports on the Bay including Redwood City, Richmond, Benecia, and Vallejo were allocated $75,000, $91,000, $20,000, and $500,000, respectively.
Total Terminals International of Oakland received $475,000, while Seaside Transportation Services got $376,000.
The San Diego Unified Port District received $1.4 million, while the inland deep-water Port of Stockton was given $336,000. The California Ammonia Company, which operates a storage facility at the Port of Stockton, received $150,000.
The Long Beach grant allocations are: $9.82 million to the city of Long Beach's Harbor Department, $200,163 to the city of Long Beach and $665,000 to Total Terminal International at Pier T.
Port of Long Beach Security Director William Ellis said that the amount received, while appreciated, is substantially less than that requested.
"We put in 11 different grant requests, totaling $20.2 million," Ellis told the Los Angeles Times.
The exact use of the funds is still to be determined, Ellis said, but part of the money will go toward the purchase of security patrol equipment, the development of a control and command center and security cameras.
The Port of Los Angeles will receive $800,000 for its Harbor Department. Individual port terminals which have received grants include Trans Pacific Container Service Corp., which will receive $1.18 million; Pacific Harbor Line Inc., $95,000; and Vopak Terminal Los Angeles Inc., just over $1 million.
Also to receive funds are the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority, $1.4 million; West Basin Container Terminal Inc., $1.2 million; and Seaside Transportation Services, $1.75 million.
"Our $800,000 will go toward harbor patrol equipment watercraft," said Port of Los Angeles spokeswoman Theresa Adams Lopez.
The remainder of the funds, she said, will be used as needed by the individual terminal operators.
In addition to the above funding, the Department of Homeland Security announced, it has made available $9 million from its fiscal year budget in the form of a port security grant for the Long Beach- Los Angeles ports.
The funds, to be distributed by the Office of Domestic Preparedness, will cover security training, exercises and planning.
These new awards "will contribute to important security upgrades like new patrol boats in the harbor, surveillance equipment at roads and bridges, and the construction of new command and control facilities," Ridge said.
The TSA, the US Coast Guard and the Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration evaluated the Port Security Grant applications and selected grant award recipients.
In addition, the Department of Homeland Security also provided $75 million in port security grants for specific projects from the fiscal year 2003 supplemental budget. Last year, $92 million was awarded in the first round of Port Security grants.
Those funds will be distributed by the Office for Domestic Preparedness to cover recent infrastructure security measures including enhancements, training, exercises, equipment, planning, and information sharing.
The Port Security Grant Program funds security planning and projects to improve dockside and perimeter security. The latest round of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) grants have been awarded to 199 state and local governments, and private companies for $170 million.
At the same time, Ridge announced $58 million in funding for Operation Safe Commerce, a pilot program in coordination with the Department of Transportation that brings together private business, ports, local, state, and federal representatives to analyze current security procedures for cargo entering the country.
The program's objective is to prompt research and development for emerging technology to monitor the movement and ensure the security and integrity of containers through the supply chain.
The ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach received $8.3 million to implement the pilot program. Seattle, Tacoma, and the Port Authority of New York / New Jersey are also participating in the pilot program.
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