News Releases

Murray Secures $11.5 million for Spokane Combined Readiness Center

May 20 2002

Head of Washington National Guard praises Murray's efforts

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Sen. Patty Murray announced Monday that she had secured an $11.5 million authorization to help Spokane prepare for and respond to public health emergencies.

The assistance for the Spokane Combined Readiness Center was included at Murray's request in the Senate Armed Services bill. The bill has passed committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

"The September 11th attacks highlight the importance of first responders to our communities," Sen. Murray said. "This funding will be instrumental in helping Spokane coordinate its response to a range of threats and incidents. We must protect our communities by providing first responders the training and resources they need to carry out a dangerous and difficult job."

The funds in the Senate legislation will enable Spokane to unify its first responders network, which consists of Spokane Fire and Police Departments, the City of Spokane Emergency Management Department and the WAARNG. Co-locating first responder training at this center will enhance the capabilities of each to prevent, educate, prepare and mitigate natural or man-made events.

The head of the Washington National Guard, Maj. Gen. Timothy Lowenberg praised Murray's efforts to secure the federal funding.

"We are grateful to Senator Murray for assuring we have the resources to execute our state's Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan," said Gen. Lowenberg. "The Spokane Readiness Center will significantly enhance our ability to provide for the safety and security of the citizens of Washington by providing a multi-jurisdictional training environment that strengthens the relationships between the Washington National Guard and other emergency responders."

Funding for the project continues to rely on federal, state and local monies. Between 1999 and 2001, the Washington state legislature provided $1 million for the design of the Combined Readiness Center. The voters of the City of Spokane indicated their support for the project through the passage of a $6 million bond issue.