New York, NY -- -$250 million was obligated today by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to reimburse state and local governments for costs associated with line-of-duty pensions to the surviving spouses and children of police officers and firefighters killed in the collapse of the World Trade Center.
The grants-$185.8 million to the New York State Emergency Management Office (SEMO) and $64 million the New York City Office of Management and Budget-cover increases in the contributions to the pension system due to the deaths of members of the New York Police Department (NYPD) and Fire Department of New York (FDNY) while performing emergency response activities. The increased contribution is eligible for federal emergency funding under the FEMA/State of New York Public Assistance program.
"These funds are provided with the thanks of a grateful nation for the sacrifices made by these fallen heroes and their families, "said Michael D. Brown, acting undersecretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response. "The courage and bravery of these members of the FDNY and NYPD will never be forgotten."
New York State Emergency Management Office Director Edward F. Jacoby, Jr. said, "We were all saddened by the World Trade Center deaths, and thank the federal government for this assistance. Remembering the ultimate sacrifice of these valiant public servants in this manner is a responsibility we all bear, for the sake of their families and the nation they so selflessly protected."
President Bush authorized FEMA to pay for 100 percent of the program costs following his disaster declaration after the Sept. 11 tragedy. Public Assistance reimburses government agencies and certain non-profits providing a government-like service for eligible disaster-related damages and costs not covered by insurance. Among the categories eligible for reimbursement are debris removal, emergency protective measures and the repair or restoration of damaged public facilities.