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Hochul: $10 million grant funding to support efforts to reduce domestic terrorism & targeted violence

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Tue, May 21st 2024 05:15 pm

Grant applications now available for counties; every county in state now has domestic terrorism prevention plan

Submitted by the Office of Gov. Kathy Hochul

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced $10 million in additional grant funding for state efforts to reduce domestic terrorism and targeted violence in the aftermath of the racist mass shooting that killed 10 people at a Tops Friendly Markets store in Buffalo on May 14, 2022.

In the days after the attack, Hochul issued executive order 18 establishing New York’s first-ever domestic terrorism prevention unit at DHSES and requiring each county in the state and New York City to develop plans to confront domestic terrorism. This included $10 million to support the development of local multidisciplinary threat assessment and management (TAM) teams in all 57 counties and New York City. 

The $10 million in grants secured by the governor in this year’s budget has been made available to counties to further develop their TAM teams and update their prevention plans. Every county in New York now has an actionable domestic terrorism prevention plan. To date, New York City and 43 of the 57 counties have TAM teams, and the remaining 14 counties are taking steps to create theirs. Grant applications and information can be found here.

“My home city has been deeply impacted by domestic terrorism, and my administration and I have been working continuously to reduce targeted violence in the aftermath of it,” Hochul said. “It is time we provide communities with the resources needed to confront threats and attacks and keep their constituents safe.”

Each county and the City of New York are eligible to receive up to $172,413 to support these efforts. The TAM teams bring together law enforcement, mental health professionals, school officials, and other community stakeholders to identify, assess and manage threats of targeted violence, which includes terrorism. Funding can be used to cover local planning, training and personnel costs related to TAM efforts, and to support the development and delivery of exercises to determine the viability of local domestic terrorism prevention plans.

More than half of the new TAM teams are already meeting and collaborating. These teams have collectively intervened in over 1,200 cases. In one case, after a young person made a threat of violence toward their school, the local TAM team coordinated transportation, counseling, addiction, and employment services for the individual and their family. Prior to executive order 18, there were only three county-based TAM teams statewide, which were supported through grants from DHSES.

Existing teams have a strong level of multidisciplinary representation. All teams have law enforcement representation, 98% of teams include mental health professionals, 89% have education representatives, and 75% have public health representatives. Other representatives on teams include social service organizations, religious and cultural institutions, and community businesses.

New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jackie Bray said, “Preventing domestic violent extremism is one of our most important jobs at DHSES. This funding supports county-based prevention plans and makes us all safer.”

New York State Association of Counties Executive Director Stephen J. Acquario said, “In the wake of the tragic mass shooting in Buffalo, counties across New York state have recognized the critical importance of being prepared to address and prevent domestic terrorism. This funding is a vital resource for counties and New York City to enhance their threat assessment and management capabilities. We commend Gov. Hochul for her commitment to public safety and for making this essential funding available. The multidisciplinary threat assessment and management (TAM) teams are equipping counties with the necessary tools and strategies to enhance their preparedness and protect the safety and well-being of their communities.”

In November 2023, Hochul announced $3 million to expand the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services’ domestic terrorism prevention unit’s (DTPU) threat assessment and management training to all colleges and universities in New York to continue combating the ongoing rise in hate speech across New York.

The DTPU will conduct training for New York colleges and universities; educate school administrators, professors and staff on how to develop and maintain TAM teams; and provide constant training to supported entities. DHSES will also help connect existing networks that are currently operational within the SUNY and CUNY systems and ensure information sharing between college and university TAM efforts and the county-led multidisciplinary TAM teams being established across the state.

The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services provides leadership, coordination and support to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate disasters and other emergencies. For more information, find it on Facebook, follow on X or Instagram, or visit the website.

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