More than 90 agencies and organizations in Maryland will share more than $12 million in federal highway safety grants aimed at reducing fatalities on roads.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has announced the grants, which will be doled out by Oct 1. Mostly police departments are the grant recipients, and Hogan’s office said the funds are allocated based on crash data.
The grants range from as small as $1,000 for The Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission to $4.5 million for the Maryland Highway Safety Office.
The Montgomery County Police Department is being awarded $199,000, and there’s $185,000 for the Prince George’s County Police Department.
Other grants include $2,100 each for the Seneca Valley High School PTSA and the Wheaton High School PTSA, and nearly $54,000 for Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
There is $68,000 for the Howard County Police Department, $15,000 for the Gaithersburg Police Department, and $18,000 for the Greenbelt Police Department.
The funds can only be used for traffic safety and are intended to support various initiatives, including increasing the use of seat belts, boosting safety for pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists and preventing impaired, aggressive and distracted driving.
“With traffic already back to pre-pandemic levels, it is even more important that we continue working to make our streets and roadways safer and more accessible,” Hogan said in a statement.
Despite a drop in the average vehicle traffic volumes, there was an increase in fatalities on Maryland roadways in 2020. While the number of total crashes and serious injuries decreased in 2020, crashes were more severe, contributing to the rise in roadway fatalities, a news release from Hogan’s office said.
“The safety of Marylanders and visitors is MDOT’s top priority, and the distribution of these grant funds will help us move toward the goal of zero highway deaths,” Maryland Transportation Secretary Gregory Slater said in a statement.