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USDOT grants nearly $700K for safety preparedness in Mississippi

Photo courtesy of the United States Department of Transportation

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has awarded $685,566 in grants to two Mississippi agencies for safety preparedness.

Included in the grant programs are the Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grant, the One-Call grant, the Underground Natural Gas Storage grant, and the State Base Pipeline Safety grant.

The HMEP grant program is part of PHMSA’s approach to improving the safe transportation of crude oil and other hazardous material across the country. The program allows flexibility in implementing planning and training programs that address the various needs of different agencies.

One-Call grants are designed to improve states’ damage prevention programs, including one-call notification systems, notification service quality, one-call record retention, state investigations of excavation damage to pipelines, enforcement against violators of state law, improvements in underground facility-locating capabilities, training of involved personnel, and public outreach and education.

The Underground Natural Gas Storage grant is funded through a user fee on operators of underground natural gas storage facilities and not public funds. The statute allows PHMSA to reimburse up to, but not more than, 80 percent of the total cost of personnel, equipment, and activities reasonably required by state UNGS safety programs over the course of one calendar year.

PHMSA’s State Base grants program supports state pipeline safety programs by repaying them a portion of each state’s total program expenses for a given calendar year based on their performance. State pipeline safety programs assure public safety through inspecting and enforcing the pipeline safety regulations, conducting incident investigations, and taking corrective actions to assure the safety and integrity of pipelines under their safety authority.

Receiving funds are:

  • Mississippi Public Service Commission – $362,741
  • Mississippi Emergency Management Agency – $322,825

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