FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ODP
TUESDAY, JULY 2, 2002 202/307-0703
AMERICAN SAMOA RECEIVES $187,000 FOR EQUIPMENT
TO RESPOND TO TERRORIST ACTS
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Justice Department today announced that American Samoa will receive $187,000 to enhance its ability to respond to acts of terrorism involving biological or chemical agents or nuclear, radiological, or explosive materials.
“Courageous local police, firefighters and EMTs were first on the scene in the horror of September 11, and many others like them will be first on the scene of any future attack. This grant demonstrates the Administration’s commitment to equipping those on the domestic front lines – our state and local emergency first responders – to respond to terrorist attacks,” said Attorney General John Ashcroft. “The grant is an important part of our nation’s fight against terrorism, and representative of the federal, state and local cooperation necessary for us to win that fight.”
The funds, awarded by the Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), will be used to purchase specialized equipment for emergency response agencies, including law enforcement personnel, fire and emergency medical services and hazardous materials response units, who are the first responders to terrorist acts involving weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The grant is awarded under the FY 2001 State Domestic Preparedness Equipment Program, administered by OJP’s Office for Domestic Preparedness (ODP).
Using ODP funding, all 50 states, the territories, and the District of Columbia can purchase a wide array of equipment including personal protective equipment; chemical, biological or radiological detection equipment; chemical, biological or radiological decontamination equipment; and communications equipment.
To qualify for funding, states, territories, and the District of Columbia first had to conduct a comprehensive assessment of risk, capabilities and needs related to a potential terrorist attack, and develop a multi-year Statewide Domestic Preparedness Strategy. States will use their statewide strategies to guide their spending of these funds.
The Office for Domestic Preparedness (ODP) was established in Fiscal Year 1998 and is the Justice Department's primary program office responsible for enhancing the capacity of state and local jurisdictions to respond to, and mitigate the consequences of, incidents of domestic terrorism. Since 1998, ODP has provided more than $250 million in equipment grants to all 50 states, the territories and the District of Columbia. In addition, ODP provides coordinated training, technical assistance, and support for federal, state and local preparedness exercises.
For more information on the Office of Domestic Preparedness (ODP) and other OJP programs, please see OJP's Website at: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/.
Media calls should be directed to David Hess in OJP’s Office of Congressional and Public Affairs at 202/307-0703.