June 19, 2009

Senators Schumer and Gillibrand Secure $1 Million for Mt. Vernon to Construct Multi Functional Emergency Operations Center

New Operations Center Will Enable Emergency Personnel to Respond to Multiple Disasters Quickly and Effectively

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced that the full Senate Appropriations Committee has approved the Department of Homeland Security FY10 Appropriations Bill which includes $1 million for Mount Vernon to reconfigure, renovate and construct a Fire Station as the City's Emergency Operations Center.  Approval by the Committee is the largest hurdled the funding needs to clear.  The bill will now proceed to the Senate Floor as the next step in the appropriations process.  Schumer and Gillibrand worked closely with members of the Appropriations Committee to include funding for the project in the 2010 spending bill.
 
“Residents in Mount Vernon and across Westchester County deserve top-notch emergency services, which is why it’s vital that we provide our emergency personnel with a base of operations from which they can respond to any incident,” said Schumer. “A functioning Emergency Operations Center will streamline emergency response services across the city to make sure that our first responders can act quickly and respond efficiently when we need their help the most.”
 
“There is nothing more important than the safety of our communities and families,” Senator Gillibrand said. “We need to make sure Mt. Vernon’s first responders are equipped with the right facilities and all the resources they need to do their jobs and keep our families safe when emergencies strike. I will work with Senator Schumer and the entire Congressional Delegation to make sure New York gets its fair share from the federal government.”
 
Currently, the City of Mount Vernon does not have an Emergency Operations Center for the managing and mitigation of a major accident. During emergency situations, the city can use the Mount Vernon Police Department’s Field Command Center vehicle, but this greatly hampers police operations and the ability to manage a multi agency incident.
 
The funds that were secured by Senators Schumer and Gillibrand in the 2010 Appropriations Bill will be used to renovate and construct an existing fire station to be used as the city’s Emergency Operation Center. The facility will accommodate emergency personnel throughout the city who will be able to respond to multiple emergencies such as floods, fires and crime. Schumer and Gillibrand noted that utilizing an existing facility within the city is cost effective and a wise investment in the health and safety of Mount Vernon residents.
 
Now that the appropriations bill has been approved by the full Senate Appropriations Committee, it will be sent to the Senate floor. Following approval by the Senate, the bill will move towards Conference with the House and then to the President for signature.