H.R. 1128: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Preparedness Planning Act was recently introduced into the House of Representatives and if passed, it may provide funding for some elements previously funded by the Readiness and Emergency Management in Schools (REMS) grant program.
The proposed grant program would be administered by the Department of Homeland Security and would provide up to $25,000,000 ($500,000 per school) in federal grant funding to help schools create and implement an emergency preparedness plan to address specific vulnerabilities.
Who could apply?
- Eligible schools located in areas vulnerable to terrorist attacks, natural disasters, or public health emergencies
What are the proposed program’s priorities?
- Schools located in or near highly populated areas would be prioritized for funding
- Schools that also have a proven track record in creating and implementing emergency preparedness plans in the past would have a greater chance at receiving funding.
How long would the program run?
- If the bill is passed, the program would be offered in FY 2012, FY 2013, and FY 2014.
As we explained recently in What’s Happening to the REMS Grant Program?, it’s still unclear whether there will be a REMS grant cycle this year in 2011 (Update from April 2011: There will be no REMS funding in 2011). Moreover, it’s unlikely that REMS in its well-known, current form will be offered in 2012, as the mother program for REMS, Safe and Drug-Free Schools, was replaced by a new Safe, Successful, and Healthy Students program in the FY 2012 Federal Budget Request. In facing the likelihood that the REMS program will not be renewed, a lot of school districts may be looking for alternative funding to address their district’s vulnerabilities. If passed, the proposed Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Preparedness program would provide a related funding opportunity for at least some districts.
Want to voice your support? Contact your representative regarding H.R. 1128.
Image Credit: TyHatch, Flickr.