FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Memphis, TN — The Central US Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC) is proud to announce that it has received an investment of $225,000 from the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) as part of the States’ Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP). The DRA is a federal-state partnership whose mission is to create jobs, build communities, and improve lives in the Mississippi River Delta region by investing in programs that better the health, accessibility, connectivity, and educational opportunities for Delta residents of all ages.
Through this investment, CUSEC and its member state partners will create the first regional Geographical Information System (GIS) in the central United States as part of its mission to help with the reduction of deaths, injuries, property damage and economic losses resulting from earthquakes in the central United States. GIS is a system designed to capture, store, manipulate, analyze, manage, and present all types of spatial or geographical data. With the use of this system, emergency management officials will have the ability to know what is happening in the nine-state CUSEC/DRA area immediately following a disaster. This system will help the region by speeding up disaster response and recovery efforts as well as improving overall disaster preparedness from an emergency management perspective.
“One of our highest priorities in this region is to ensure that our communities, businesses, and families are ready to bounce back economically from a natural disaster,” said Chris Masingill, Federal Co-Chairman of the DRA. “The disaster preparedness and mitigation capabilities that CUSEC and this regional GIS is bringing to Delta states will make our communities more resilient and more competitive for future economic growth.”
The SEDAP is the primary investment tool that allows the DRA to invest directly in community-based and regional projects that address the basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, workforce development, and small business and entrepreneurship needs of Delta communities. The investment in CUSEC will provide communities along the Mississippi River with a better understanding of their earthquake risk, identifying their community needs and how to plan and prepare for emergency situations.
“I couldn’t be more pleased in receiving the DRA grant, not only does the award boost CUSEC’s preparedness efforts through the expansion of our regional GIS program, it also builds on a long standing partnership between CUSEC and DRA,” said Jim Wilkinson, CUSEC Executive Director. For more information about the DRA, visit: www.dra.gov. For additional information about the SEDAP program, visit: www.dra.gov/SEDAP; and for more information about CUSEC, please visit: www.cusec.org. About the Central US Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC)
Established in 1983 with funding support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, CUSEC’s primary mission is, “… the reduction of deaths, injuries, property damage and economic losses resulting from earthquakes in the Central United States.” CUSEC’s primary objective is to provide dynamic support to multi-state response and recovery planning, resource acquisition; public education and awareness; promotion; mitigation, and research associated with earthquake preparedness in the Central United States. CUSEC Member States are those most vulnerable to the effects of earthquakes in the region and include Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee.
About the Delta Regional Authority (DRA)
The DRA is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to help create jobs, build communities, and improve lives through strategic investments in economic development in 252 counties and parishes across eight states. Through the past thirteen investment cycles of the DRA’s States Economic Development Assistance Program, DRA investments have leveraged $2.7 billion in other public and private investment into projects that are helping to create and retain 42,000 jobs, train 13,000 for a 21st century workforce, and provide more than 82,000 families access to clean water and sewer services.