Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin) and a group of others in Congress have led a successful effort to obtain a $17.4 million grant from the Department of Homeland Security secure the Transbay BART Tube that connects the East Bay and San Francisco against a potential terrorist attack.
Swalwell, a member of the Homeland Security Transportation Security Subcommittee, led a letter to DHS urging support for BART's request for transit security funding.
"My priority is protecting the millions of riders who rely on BART," said Swalwell. "This Department of Homeland Security grant is a smart investment that will enable BART to enhance the security of its critical infrastructure against a potential terrorist attack. The failure to do so could cripple the Bay Area's economy."
Swalwell was joined in the funding bid by other members in Congress including Mike Honda, Barbara Lee, Zoe Lofgren, George Miller, Jackie Speier ), and Anna G. Eshoo. Last year, Swalwell helped secure a $12.8 million FY14 transportation security grant for BART.
"We cannot thank Congressman Swalwell enough for his tremendous leadership on securing this critical security funding for our system," said Grace Crunican, BART's general manager.
"Given all the high priority needs throughout the nation, this amazing proportion of the entire allotment is greatly appreciated and will go a long way in helping protect the BART system, its employees, and over 400,000 weekday riders."
The Transit Security Grant Program, which is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, provides funds to owners and operators of transit systems to protect critical surface transportation infrastructure and the traveling public from acts of terrorism and to increase the resilience of transit infrastructure.
Recognizing the importance of this program, Swalwell led a separate letter last April urging $105 million for the TSGP program in order to secure mass transit systems, like BART, against terrorist attacks.