Missouri has gotten almost 30-million dollars to improve its homeland security programs.
One-fourth of those funds is to be used for preparedness, planning, training, and countering improvised explosive devices—-the things we usually associate with the roadside bombs that have killed and wounded hundreds of American troops in Iraq.
Of course, there have not been any of those IEDs in Missouri.
But state public safety director Mark James says there have been IEDs…
"Usually..it is people making homemade fireworks or experimenting around with…pipe bonds," he says.
There have been deadly IEDs in Missouri. James remembers when he was an street agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and worked on several ganglang bombings.
He says Missouri already has invested a lot of earlier Homeland Security money in the state’s counter-explosive device training program. He points to explosives response units in Columbia, for example, or within the Highway Patrol. James says the state tries to use these planning and preparedness funds as broadly as possible so the state gets "the most bang for the buck."