First Responder Initiative: Policy Issues and Options [Updated September 29, 2003] [open pdf - 189KB]
"In its FY2004 budget request, the Bush Administration proposed a new grant program called the 'First Responder Initiative' to help first responders prepare for possible terrorist attacks. Under the proposal, the Office for Domestic Preparedness (ODP), within the Department of Homeland Security, would administer program components of the initiative. The program's primary purpose would be to improve the ability of first responders (including police, firefighters, emergency medical, and hazardous materials personnel) to respond to terrorist attacks involving weapons of mass destruction. The program would fund a range of activities in the areas of planning, training, exercises, and equipment. The Administration proposal is one of several proposals to restructure first responder preparedness grants before the 108th Congress. Recently, the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee approved S. 1245, the Homeland Security Grant Enhancement Act of 2003, which seeks to simplify and streamline existing grant programs for first responder preparedness. This report will be updated as the 108th Congress takes action on proposals to create or modify first responder preparedness programs."
CRS Report for Congress, RL31475