Congress Approves $10.2 Million for Earthquake Early Warning System as Part of Budget Deal

A Granada Hills home on Balboa Boulevard after the 1994 Northridge earthquake. (Credit: Ken Lubas / Los Angeles Times)

The budget deal reached in Congress this week penciled in $10.2 million for an earthquake early warning system for California and the rest of the West Coast for the budget year that ends in September.

The funding represents an increase from the last fiscal year’s federal budget, which allocated $8.2 million for the system. The network is being built under the leadership of the U.S. Geological Survey, with development from scientists at Caltech, UC Berkeley, the University of Washington and University of Oregon.

Three dozen members of Congress earlier this spring had urged their fellow lawmakers to increase the federal funding level for the warning system to $16.1 million a year, which is the estimated annual operating and maintenance cost of the system once it is fully built. Officials estimate it will cost $38.2 million to build the system, according to a statement from Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), an advocate for fully funding the system.

The system is in development and is still being tested.

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