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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Honolulu gets share of $740M anti-terrorism grant

Associated Press

MAJOR URBAN AREAS TO GET HOMELAND SECURITY MONEY

Forty-six cities and their suburbs will win Homeland Security Department counterterrorism grants from a $740 million program this year. The amounts each city gets will be announced today.

Three of the cities on this year's list didn't make the cut last year but are now considered higher-risk terrorist targets by Homeland Security. They are: Memphis, Tenn., and Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, Fla. Eleven of the cities may not qualify in 2007. They are: Baton Rouge, La.; Buffalo, N.Y.; Las Vegas; Louisville, Ky.; Oklahoma City; Omaha, Neb.; Phoenix; Sacramento, Calif.; San Diego; Tampa, Fla.; and Toledo, Ohio.

The rest of the cities to win the funding are:

CALIFORNIA: Anaheim/Santa Ana; Los Angeles; San Francisco/ Oakland

COLORADO: Denver

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: The national capital region, including Washington and its Maryland and Virginia suburbs

FLORIDA: Jacksonville; Miami

GEORGIA: Atlanta

HAWAI'I: Honolulu

ILLINOIS: Chicago

INDIANA: Indianapolis

LOUISIANA: New Orleans

MASSACHUSETTS: Boston

MARYLAND: Baltimore

MICHIGAN: Detroit

MINNESOTA: Minneapolis/St. Paul

MISSOURI: Kansas City; St. Louis

NORTH CAROLINA: Charlotte

NEW JERSEY: Jersey City/Newark

NEW YORK: New York City

OHIO: Cincinnati; Cleveland; Columbus

OREGON: Portland

PENNSYLVANIA: Philadelphia; Pittsburgh

TEXAS: Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington; Houston; San Antonio

WASHINGTON: Seattle

WISCONSIN: Milwaukee

Source: Homeland Security Department

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Honolulu is among 46 cities selected to receive counterterrorism money this year from the Department of Homeland Security. Major urban areas will find out today their share of a $740 million anti-terrorism grant.

Three cities Memphis, Tenn., and Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, Fla. qualified for the list of eligible cities this year after being passed over in 2005.

Eleven others may be booted in 2007 based on a new Homeland Security formula that the department says is based on intelligence and law enforcement data about terrorist threats and the possible consequences in each city.

Honolulu was passed over for funding in 2004, but received $6 million in 2003 and $6.4 million in 2005.

John Cummings, spokesman for O'ahu Civil Defense, said Honolulu has been receiving federal funding fairly consistently since 1997, when the city was included in a list of 111 that could be potential targets for terrorists.

"We've been recognized for a while now as a city that could be of interest," Cummings said.

The money is part of a $1.7 billion Homeland Security grant program to prevent and respond to terrorist attacks and, to a lesser extent, other catastrophic disasters such as hurricanes.

Previous Homeland Security grants have helped Honolulu shore up the emergency response system used for emergencies beyond attacks, said Ben Dimond, O'ahu's homeland security grants coordinator.

"The kinds of equipment we are purchasing would also assist our first responders in the case of a natural disaster," he said.

For instance, the funding has been used to improve the emergency radio system to include the Fire Department and can be expanded to include emergency medical services, he said.

Advertiser staff writer Treena Shapiro contributed to this report.