Homeland Security Applies for Cybersecurity Grants to Benefit Local Government; Asks Townships to Complete Brief Survey 

The Pennsylvania Office of Homeland Security (PAOHS) has announced a funding opportunity to address cybersecurity issues in the commonwealth. Federal grant funds will be made available through a Notice of Funding Opportunity expected to be released near the end of September 2022. The grant will require an 80% pass-through either directly or for the benefit of local units of government. This can include a combination of services, equipment, and training. The funds will be made available over a four-year period and require a match of 10% in year 1, 20% in year 2, 30% in year 3, and 40% in year 4. Discussions are ongoing to determine the source of match funding. PAOHS has created a task force to develop a plan for these funds. PSATS holds a seat on that task force.  

While the amount of funding has not yet been released, it is anticipated Pennsylvania will receive approximately $30 million over the four-year grant period. The approach PAOHS is taking is for the task force to develop approximately five or six projects that will benefit large segments of local government. An example would be cybersecurity awareness training and ongoing random testing of employees of municipal government in an effort to defeat phishing or other cyber attacks. There may be other services or equipment which would benefit townships. 

To better inform the efforts of the task force, PAOHS has requested that township officials complete a six-question survey about current capabilities and priorities with regard to cybersecurity.  

Please have someone with knowledge of your township’s cyber systems complete the survey through this link before September 26: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZQWJYR2 

Questions can be directed to George Bivens at PSATS at gbivens@psats.org

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