Cortland County awarded $5 million grant to help with emergency communications

(Photo via Getty Images).

Cortland County legislators recently announced the county received a $5 million grant from the New York’s Statewide Interoperable Communications Grant (SICG) program. 

The program, administered by the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (NYSDHSES), provides funding to enhance public safety through improving and modernizing infrastructure, addressing communications deficiencies, implementing national interoperability channels, and boosting regional connectivity between counties and systems.

Legislator Kelly Preston (R-LD-10) announced the county’s award last Thursday at the legislature meeting.

“Good things are happening in the county. We hear about the bad things. Let's hear about the good things,” she said.

Preston announced that $1.5 million of that grant, applied for by the county’s director of emergency response and communications, would go toward the new 911 Center’s network’s connections and connections to contiguous counties. The center will be nestled at 22 W. Court St. and is set to be completed sometime this year

Another $2.5 million would go toward improving the county’s radio systems. Lastly, $1 million would be used to improve the connection of the county’s local radio system to the Central New York radio system core.

“The county is lucky to have (Scott) Roman at the helm and fighting for grants to allow the residents of Cortland county to be better served,” Preston added.

In a press release, Gov. Kathy Hochul explained the need for increased state funds for emergency response services.

“When disaster strikes, New York must be ready. This grant funding is critical to modernizing our emergency communication systems to ensure that our brave first responders have the resources and data they need to keep the community and themselves safe during an emergency,” Hochul said. “Keeping New Yorkers safe is my top priority and this program is key to improving public safety throughout upstate New York.”