Some Homeland Security activities remain unfunded

Despite President Bush's approval of the fiscal 2004 Homeland Security Department spending bill, more than 25 percent of federal homeland security activities remain unfunded, a top Senate budget expert said Monday.

Six weeks into fiscal year 2004, Congress has passed four of 13 departmental appropriations bills. The Homeland Security appropriations was the first signed by Bush, but in fact that accounts for little more than half of administration-wide spending on homeland security, said Bill Hoagland, budget and appropriations director in the Senate Majority Leader's office.

Total fiscal 2004 federal spending on homeland security is expected to be $41.3 billion, Hoagland said at an Equity International homeland security conference. Only about two-thirds, or approximately $23.9 billion, of the total Homeland Security Department funding of $29.4 billion is for homeland security activities. The remainder is for items such as regular operations of the Coast Guard and disaster response.

The only other homeland security spending approved so far is about $6.7 billion under the Defense Department, which combined with the Homeland Security Department, brings the total to date to about $30 billion, or three-quarters of the total $41.3 billion, he said.

Of the remaining appropriations legislation, the bill to fund the Commerce, Justice and State departments accounts for the largest additional homeland security spending, Hoagland said. The Senate began work on that bill Monday afternoon, but it contains "very controversial" issues such as media ownership at the FCC, he noted.

Also on the panel, Michael Geffroy, senior counsel on the House Select Committee on Homeland Security, said, "It's fair to say it is time for the department to find its legs" and move forward on its mission.

Geffroy walked through a bill proposed by committee Chairman Christopher Cox, R-Calif., to "dramatically reshape" the distribution of grant money to first responders to emergencies. He said the chairman hopes the committee can address the bill, which would provide regional funding on the basis of overdue Homeland Security Department threat assessments rather than on population, before Thanksgiving recess.

Geffroy also discussed other committee legislation, including setting "milestone markers" for the department as a way to measure progress over time. He said Cox's staff is working with committee Democrats and industry to identify good milestones, and he predicted the process would not be resolved before Congress leaves for the year.

The committee also is examining industry concerns that intellectual property and business proprietary information is not adequately protected under the law creating the Homeland Security Department. "There is clear recognition that there are many questions about the regulations in place," Geffroy said afterward. The committee will continue gathering views on this issue into next year, he said.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.