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SCHENECTADY COUNTY – Schenectady County has received $10,000 in state funding to expand its Project Lifesaver program, state Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara announced late last week.

The funds are expected to enable the county to purchase about 100 more of the ID bracelets that can be assigned to people who are at risk of wandering off, including people with autism spectrum disorders. Santabarbara, D-Rotterdam, is chairman of the state Assembly’s Committee on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Project Lifesaver is designed to help local law enforcement agencies find missing people who have a tendency to wander, including people with autism disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, and other related conditions. The individuals wear a discreet bracelet on their wrist or ankle which, when activated, will allow law enforcement officers to quickly find them without the need for massive search and rescue efforts.

Santabarbara presented the funding last week to Schenectady County Sheriff Dominic Dagostino, who is working to expand the program and encourage parents and caregivers to take advantage of the lifesaving technology to keep their loved ones safe.

“Project Lifesaver is proven technology that can reduce the search for a missing person from days and hours down to minutes without need for massive search and rescue efforts,” Santabarbara said. “It’s critical that we invest in this life-saving technology to protect our most vulnerable citizens.”

Each bracelet has a transmitter that emits a unique signal, so that if a person is missing, a deputy carrying a portable receiver can come to the location and track the signal. The Schenectady County Sheriff’s Office has been offering the program since 2014.