Tribes in Southeast will soon have more say in their emergency preparedness plans. The Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska is the recipient of a $240,000 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA.

The funding is part of FEMA’s Emergency Management Performance Grant, a national effort to encourage state, local, territorial, and tribal governments in planning for disasters. The Central Council will work alongside Alaska’s Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management to implement plans throughout Southeast.

A press release from the Central Council announcing the grant also announced the promotion of Village Public Safety Officer Sergeant Corey Padron to Emergency Management Coordinator. The FEMA grant will be paid in salary reimbursements, with $80,000 available through July of this year and another $160,000 through July 2018.

Padron has served as a VPSO in Saxman through the Central Council for five years. He also teaches at the Village Police Officer Academy in Bethel and the Alaska Public Safety Training Academy in Sitka.

In a statement to the Central Council, Padron says he plans to work directly with other VPSOs and partner communities. He plans to review and update any existing emergency preparedness plans and then draw up new ones where necessary.

Padron says he’ll look for training opportunities and additional grants to increase the disaster resiliency of tribes and communities across Southeast.