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Poarch awaits security grant

By Staff
Special to the Advance
Poarch Creek Indian homeland security officials met recently with Alabama Homeland Security Director Jim Walker to lay out their spending plan for grant dollars received through the fiscal year 2006 State Homeland Security Grant Program.
The Poarch Creek Indians, Alabama's federally recognized Indian tribe, is set to receive more than $16,000 to spend on homeland security planning, training, exercises, and equipment. Under a plan approved by Gov. Bob Riley, every Alabama county will receive funding to improve its ability to prevent, protect, and respond to terrorist-related activities.
"The safety of all Alabamians is our highest priority," Riley said. "All 67 counties in Alabama will receive homeland security grants this year. We work with every county to help each make important improvements in their homeland security capabilities and county programs."
The Poarch Creek Indian proposal, agreed to by county, municipality and public safety officials throughout the county, requests the purchase of information technology equipment and interoperable communications equipment to assist in county homeland security efforts.
"The Tribe will be participating with Escambia County for a joint exercise and will also be purchasing equipment for our existing Emergency Operations Center that can be used for the new EOC when it is built next year," April Sells, Poarch Creek Indian Homeland Security Point of Contact, said.
In June 2006, Alabama received the highest possible effectiveness rating for a state homeland security program, as determined by the US Department of Homeland Security and a panel of over 100 experts from around the country. "With the continued strong cooperation and leadership from our counties, we will only get better," Walker said.