The Port of Anchorage has received a $207,000 federal grant, which comes on the heels of a $900,000 grant one year ago, to beef up security at the port using advanced technology.
The funds will be used for an enhanced emergency radio system, additional surveillance cameras, a fiber optic backbone for the Port's CCTV network, and emergency power back up for the security command and control facility. The additional security is required by the Coast Guard following the 9/11 attacks.
The grant, from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, is part of $388 million to seaports throughout the country to assist ports in obtaining the resources required in support of the national preparedness guidelines and the national priorities. The program emphasizes port-wide planning, enhanced Maritime Domain Awareness, training and exercises, and enhanced preparedness, protection, response, and recovery capabilities in the port environment.
"This is great news for Anchorage's port, which handles 90 percent of all goods for 80 percent of Alaska's population each year," said Deputy Port Director Steve Ribuffo. "Security at our port is especially important because we have been deemed one of 16 national strategic ports by the U.S. Department of Transportation. In addition to cargo traffic, the Port of Anchorage is vital for Alaska's international military mission."
Homeland Security grants are administered under a 75/25 cost-share arrangement. The Port of Anchorage's 25 percent contribution will come from port profits. There will be no cost to the municipality for any of the upgrades being undertaken in the execution of this grant.