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The Department of Transportation (DOT) posted a notice-of-funding-opportunity on Feb. 20 for federally recognized tribes and tribal organizations to participate in the Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grant program. 

The grant initiative aims to enhance HAZMAT planning and training activities, ensuring the safe transport of hazardous materials within tribal territories.

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The DOT has allocated $1 million for the FY 2024 HMEP Planning and Training Grant for Tribes. The agency intends to make 15 grant awards ranging from $50,000 to $250,000, as outlined in a summary available on the Grants.gov website.

Funded under the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015, the HMEP grant program was authorized by Congress in 1990 under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act. The program has historically been fully funded by registration fees collected from HAZMAT shippers and carriers engaged in intrastate, interstate, or foreign commerce.

Of the total authorized amount of $21.9 million for states, tribes, and territories, approximately $1 million has been allocated specifically for federally recognized tribes and tribal nonprofit organizations. This funding is intended to support essential planning and training activities related to hazardous materials emergency preparedness, according to materials posted on grants.gov.  

All applications must be submitted via the Grants.gov website and the DOT emphasizes that mail and fax submissions will not be considered. The deadline for completed HMEP tribal grants is 11:59 p.m. (EST) on April 5, 2024.