St. Lawrence County eligible for part of $75 million state grant to improve communications systems
Tuesday, August 6, 2013 - 5:46 pm

St. Lawrence County is eligible to be part of a $75 million state grant program to help counties strengthen and improve their emergency communications systems.

The Statewide Interoperability Communications Grants will help expand a county’s communications functions with neighboring counties and first responders.

“Our experience over the last few years has taught us that the ability to communicate effectively and efficiently on all levels of government is crucial for preparing and responding to an emergency,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in announcing the round of grants.

The SICG program is a multi-year competitive grant, funded by cellular telephone surcharge revenue, emphasizing regional partnerships and formalizing procedures between counties and first response agencies.

Grant applications must pertain to response-level emergency communications across multiple jurisdictions and agencies, including state agencies, and must utilize non-proprietary, open standards-based technologies and equipment.

State officials say the grants will facilitate equipment purchases, training and regionalization which, when the systems are operational, will greatly improve the response to large scale natural or man-made disasters.

County Public Safety Organizations who have not previously received SICG awards under Round 1 or Round 2 may apply for up to $6 million in funding.

St. Lawrence County is among counties that have not previously received SICG awards under Round 1 or Round 2 and are eligible for Round 3.

Applications must be received by Sept. 30.

Neighboring counties also eligible for the program include Franklin, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, and Lewis.