Chandler, Tempe share in $12 million disaster fund

Chandler and Tempe will be among Valley cities sharing a $12 million federal grant to establish rapid response teams for local disasters or terrorist events should they occur.

The funds come from the U.S. government's Urban Areas Security Initiative program, which provides homeland security funding to the top 30 urban areas in the country as determined by population and risk assessment.

Phoenix is one of the qualifying communities, and any city bordering Phoenix was eligible to receive part of the funding. 

As part of the state of Arizona Homeland Security Initiative, funds will be earmarked for rapid response teams in Chandler, Tempe, Glendale, Phoenix and Mesa.

Teams will consist of police and fire department personnel who will be trained and equipped to provide local and, if needed, statewide emergency response.

To establish its response team, Chandler will use its $1.2 million allocation to fund specialized training and to purchase incident-response vehicles and equipment used for bomb detection, search and rescue, explosives mitigation, emergency communication and personal protection.

Tempe’s $2.2 million allocation, of which $1.2 million goes to the police department and $1 million to the fire department, will be used for many of the same types of services and equipment.

Tempe also plans to conduct mock training scenarios, buy special breathing apparatus and photography equipment, and purchase specialty supply-transport vehicles.