DHS announces $1.8 billion in grants

States and cities at risk of natural disasters and terrorism will receive nearly $1.8 billion in federal preparedness grants to protect, prevent, respond and recover from potential calamities this fiscal year, according to the Department of Homeland Security. The majority of that money — $1.7 billion — will go to the Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP).

DHS said the money will be allocated as follows:

  • State Homeland Security Program (SHSP) — $861.1 million will build and strengthen preparedness capabilities at all levels through planning, equipment, and readiness activities.
  • Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) — $798.6 million will enhance urban preparedness capabilities in 62 high-threat, high-density areas. The seven highest risk areas (Tier 1) were allocated approximately $439 million, or 55 % of available funds, while the remaining areas (Tier 2) will receive approximately $359 million.
  • Metropolitan Medical Response System Program (MMRS) — $39.8 million, divided evenly among 124 MMRS jurisdictions, will improve regional mass casualty incident preparedness and response capabilities.
  • Citizen Corps Program (CCP) — $14.6 million will bring community and government leaders together to engage citizens in community preparedness, response and recovery activities.

The increase in total funds going to the HSGP is less than 1% over last year, according to DHS.

Digi International unveils Smart Energy product suite for utilities

Digi International introduced its Smart Energy product suite for utilities, including ZigBee ready modules and certified Energy Service Portal gateways built on such modules. The company's line includes the XBee and XBee-PRO SE ZigBee modules and ConnectPort X2 ESP certified gateway. The modules feature ZigBee -ready firmware for supporting the implementation of each of the eight devices defined in the ZigBee Smart Energy public application profile. These include ESPs, metering devices, in-premise display devices, programmable communicating thermostats (PCTs), load controllers, range extenders, smart appliances and prepayment terminals. The ConnectPort X2 ESP gateway provides the connection between a consumer's home-area network and an energy service provider over a broadband or cellular connection, according to the company.

Cape May County and Etherstack demonstrate P25 interoperability among seven manufacturers

The National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center Communications Technologies Center of Excellence (COE) and Etherstack have completed functional testing of seven different P25 subscriber units on a two-site, trunked and conventional P25 network installed in Cape May County, N.J. The network is composed of repeaters from Kenwood, Tait, and a third manufacturer with Etherstack's P25 RFSS network controller application running on a Cisco 2811 AXP router tying it together, according to Etherstack.

EF Johnson Technologies passes factory P25 test

EF Johnson Technologies passed the factory acceptance test for delivery of its conventional IP25 infrastructure system in the Yukon Territory of Canada. When deployed, the system will provide secure interoperable communications for first responders within the territory as well as with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, according to the company.

Klein Electronics introduces two-way radio

Klein Electronics introduced the Blackbox+ series professional two-way radio. According to the company, the radio has a compact design with all metal chassis and meets IP-54 water resistant standards. It is a software-programmable radio that works with UHF/VHF and offers 16 channels with scan and priority scan

FreeWave Technologies unveils licensed radio

Freewave Technologies announced the LRS455 licensed radio for the gas, water/wastewater, electric and municipality markets. The radio offers 19200 bps throughput on a 12.5 kHz channel, a 70-mile range and RF propagation characteristics in 430-470 MHz frequencies at 2 watts. It is suited for long-distance SCADA applications located within rough terrain or heavy tree coverage, according to the company.