MORRIS – State funding for the Grundy County Emergency Management Agency is on par with the local department’s budget.
The EMA was awarded $25,061 in Emergency Management Performance Grant money last week from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency through an annual grant program. The amount is almost exactly what the Grundy EMA expected to receive, according to EMA Director Joe Schroeder.
“We budgeted $25,000, so we are right where we thought we’d be,” Schroeder said.
The money can be used to for the daily operations of the EMA office, including salaries, office supplies and travel expenses, IEMA Communications Manager Patti Thompson said.
“This could be for some of their personnel expenses or any other day-to-day expenses that come with having an office,” Thompson said.
Schroeder said the money will feed into the department’s operating budget and likely be put toward salaries and other employee costs.
IEMA funding fluctuates yearly, but Thompson said this year and last year, the state was able to dole out $4 million to local emergency management agencies. Keeping EMA funding constant is important to state officials since Illinois was hit with a record amount of natural disasters in the past few years.
“Strong local emergency management programs are key components of public safety throughout Illinois,” IEMA Director Jonathon Monken said in a news release. “These grants support local emergency management agencies to help them be prepared to respond to disasters in their communities.”
Another $7 million in federal performance grant money is on the way, which will provide training courses, emergency response exercise support and emergency planning assistance to emergency responders statewide.
Schroeder said the EMA depends on the grant money every year and is always happy when they receive the amount they request.
“For 2015, I’ve already counted on this being an income for us,” he said. “It could create problems if the federal government didn’t send the money on down, but that’s a risk you have to take every year.”