U.S. provides $25.5 million for strengthening communication along its borders


WASHINGTON D.C. (BNO NEWS) — The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Monday announced a $25.5 funding to strengthen interoperable emergency communications along the U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico.

The $25.5 million in grant funding was allocated under the Border Interoperability Demonstration Project (BIDP), a one-time competitive grant program focused on developing innovative solutions to enhance border communication.

“The projects funded through the BIDP strengthen the security of our northern and southern borders, and our nation’s overall preparedness and emergency response capabilities,” said DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano.

The BIDP grant funding will provide resources to state and local agencies to explore innovative, effective, and adaptable solutions for improving emergency communications.

The $25.5 million will be given to seven projects in seven different U.S. states, including Arizona, California, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Ohio, and Texas. The BIDP funding is subject to change pending final negotiations.

Among the selected projects are the Yuma Full Voice and Data Integration Demonstration in Arizona ($3,994,443), the Enhanced Communications Infrastructure and Partnerships for Border Security in Maine ($4 million), and the Multi-Agency, Multi-Jurisdictional U.S. Regional & International Interoperable Communications Infrastructure and Maritime Domain Awareness in Ohio ($3,998,200).

BIDP was established to identify solutions that facilitate emergency communications along and across the border, and ensure that emergency response providers can communicate during natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other catastrophic events by the DHS Office of Emergency Communications (OEC).

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