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File #: 21-0922    Name:
Type: Status: Agenda Ready
File created: 4/1/2021 In control: City Council Legislative Meeting
On agenda: 4/27/2021 Final action:
Title: Consideration of Grant Application for FY 2021 Port Security Grant Program (PSGP).

City of Alexandria, Virginia







DATE:                     APRIL 21, 2021




FROM:                     MARK B. JINKS, CITY MANAGER /s/


DOCKET TITLE:                     


Consideration of Grant Application for FY 2021 Port Security Grant Program (PSGP).




ISSUE: Consideration of a grant application to the 2021 Port Security Grant Program, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).


RECOMMENDATION: That City Council:


(1)                     Approve the grant application to the 2021 Port Security Grant Program, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in the amount of $350,624; and


(2)                     Authorize the City Manager to execute all the necessary documents that may be required.


BACKGROUND: For six of the last eleven fiscal years, the City has applied for and been awarded a U.S. Port Security Grant from the Department of Homeland Security.  Most of the applications have been focused on the maintenance work required annually for the fireboat. On February 25, 2021 FEMA opened the Federal 2021 grant application period for the Port Security Grant Program (PSGP), which focuses on securing and guarding harbors and port areas for the protection of critical infrastructure from terrorism.


The purpose of the PSGP is to support increased port-wide risk management; enhance domain awareness, cybersecurity enhancements, conduct training and exercises, expand port recovery and resiliency capabilities, further capabilities to prevent, detect, respond to and recover from attacks involving improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and other non-conventional weapons, and competitively award grant funding to assist ports in the implementation of the National Preparedness System (NPS) by supporting the building, sustainment, and delivery of core capabilities essential to achieving the National Preparedness Goal (NPG) of a secure and resilient nation.


The City of Alexandria plays a vital role in ensuring that the Potomac River and adjacent waterways are protected against terrorism and other threats, particularly in light of its responsibility for providing fire and EMS protection for emergencies on the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and the thousands of Alexandria citizens and visitors who cross said structure each day.


The City received a $1,230,000 award from the FY 2010 PSGP to purchase a 50-foot fire boat with a pumping capacity of 7,000 to 8,000 gpm. This vessel was purchased to provide an all-hazards response vessel with state-of-the-art capabilities for providing preventative security and emergency response around the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, and the Potomac River.


DISCUSSION: The fire boat requires ongoing maintenance at prescribed intervals and other repairs to ensure systems are operating at optimal performance and accuracy. The systems needing maintenance include: HVAC, transmissions, engine, security system and fire pumps, 15 kw generator, electronics system, and the superstructure of the vessel. Some periodic schedules call for inspections of parts and the replacement of parts as needed. Other interval schedules require total rebuilds of wearable parts.


The City of Alexandria, as a member of the U.S. Coast Guard, National Capital Region (NCR), Area Maritime Security Committee (AMSC), is eligible to submit for a project in nationwide competitive process to award the 2021 PSGP. Grant awards for public sector applicants require a non-Federal match (cash or in-kind) supporting at least 25 percent (25%) of the total project cost.


The funding guidelines for the PSGP allow for maintenance and sustainment programs for maintenance contracts, warranties, repair or replacement costs, and user fees for active and future grant awards. The allowable maintenance costs are permissible up to the maximum of the grant’s performance period of 36 months.


This year the Fire Department is requesting funding for several projects within the grant application:


1.                     Cybersecurity: Technology advances require constant review of systems in use. There are several areas within the electronics of the boat that need to be enhanced to keep up with current and future threats. The anticipated costs of these enhancements are $62,600.

2.                     Training and PPE: Operation of a fire boat requires constant training. This training goes above and beyond fire training. There are advanced maintenance and mechanical, search and rescue, shipboard firefighting, and radar and radio training needs. These courses are required to continue training of rescue personnel and system operators. Operations in these training environments as well as those found on the river require specialized personnel protective equipment. The anticipated costs associated with training and PPE ais $157,224.

3.                     Maintenance: The fire boat qualifies for competitive maintenance and sustainment programs, above the routine daily maintenance operations covered by the fire department. Since the purchase, funding has been provided through an active PSGP award, to cover these additional maintenance requirements. The City was awarded $118,300 from the   FY 2017 PSGP to cover the third year of replacement parts, maintenance, and warranties through August 2020, that grant was fully utilized. The anticipated cost for parts and maintenance for the next several years is estimated to be at $130,800.

FISCAL IMPACTThe City is responsible for normal operational, maintenance and repair costs for the fire boat. An award from this grant will provide a savings to the City for up to seventy-five percent (75%) of the maintenance, training, and equipment. These costs are estimated to total $350,624, with the City match totaling $87,656. The local match has been budgeted in the Fire Department’s Operating Budget, Fire Programs.


This grant has been previously awarded in 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2017.





Debra Collins, Deputy City Manager

Corey Smedley, Fire Chief