Strategic investment of federal Homeland Security funds to local law enforcement, emergency managers, firefighters, and other terrorism prevention and response agencies at the state level have resulted in better preparedness, increased capabilities, and improved response capacity that would not otherwise have been possible.
On any given day, equipment, training, and planning funded by homeland security grants are used across the state to protect Wisconsin communities, respond to emergencies, and keep emergency personnel safe.
All Homeland Security funds are spent in accordance with the State Homeland Security Strategy. The State Homeland Security Council, of which OJA is a member, identifies gaps in the state’s protection and sets statewide priorities in the State Homeland Security Strategy. OJA investment of Homeland Security funding is directly tied to priorities and needs identified in the state strategy.
Wisconsin’s statewide strategy uses a disciplined, focused approach that prioritizes building regional and statewide capabilities to help communities prepare for, respond to, and recover from catastrophic events (including terrorist attacks and major disasters) that would otherwise overwhelm local emergency response. The emphasis on collaboration and focus on building shared resources and capacity has made these initiatives extremely cost-effective.
Deciding where to invest state homeland security dollars is a collaborative effort. Local fire and law enforcement agencies, emergency managers, tribal public safety, state agencies, non-profit organizations, and representatives from the private sector all advise OJA on needs and priorities through the Homeland Security Funding Advisory Committee. OJA manages its grants to ensure that every dollar is spent as intended and as efficiently as possible.
The majority of investment (80%) has been passed through to local governments; often local awards have been leveraged in tandem with monies used for statewide strategic initiatives to maximize effectiveness.