DHS Secretary Napolitano Announces $42 Million in Funding for Explosive Detection Systems at Three Airports

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano on Aug. 7 announced approximately $42 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding for the construction of new inline baggage handling systems at Sacramento International Airport (SMF), Honolulu International Airport (HNL) and Kahului Airport (OGG). These projects are designed to streamline passenger check-in and improve explosives detection capabilities.

“Recovery Act projects are utilizing the latest science and technology to secure our country while creating jobs locally. These new inline explosives detection systems will strengthen airport security and streamline the baggage screening process,” said Napolitano. “Using Recovery Act dollars for these important security enhancements in Hawaii and California will infuse funds directly into the local economies and create more jobs for Americans.”

Sacramento International Airport will receive $11 million in ARRA funding, while Honolulu International Airport and Kahului Airport will receive $24 and $7 million in Recovery Act funds, respectively, for explosive detection systems.

Inline baggage handling systems use state-of-the-art technology to efficiently screen baggage for explosives while streamlining the ticketing and boarding process. These systems eliminate the need for passengers to walk their checked baggage to a screening location and wait before proceeding to the security checkpoint. In addition, the systems provide on-screen viewing capabilities for Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers conducting baggage screenings and reduce the number of re-scans and physical bag searches.

Since June, Secretary Napolitano has announced more than $62 million in ARRA funding for explosive detection system projects at Orlando International, San Francisco International, Philadelphia International and Jackson Hole Airports. She also announced approximately $7.7 million in ARRA funding for the installation of new closed circuit television systems at four additional airports to enhance threat detection and emergency response efforts.

In awarding ARRA funds, DHS prioritizes shovel-ready projects that infuse resources into local economies quickly while meeting critical security needs. DHS has obligated more than 20 percent of its ARRA funds to date, and is on track to promised more than 50 percent by the end of September 2009.

ARRA, signed into law by President Obama on Feb. 19, committed more than $3 billion for homeland security projects through DHS and the General Services Administration (GSA). Of the $1 billion allocated to TSA for aviation security projects, $700 million is dedicated to screening checked baggage and $300 million is allocated for checkpoint explosives detection technology.

To learn more about the DHS Recovery Act projects, visit http://www.dhs.gov/recovery.

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