House and Senate Approve Homeland Security Funding
By Ed Somers and Ron Thaniel
August 4, 2003
The House and Senate have both approved their FY 2004 funding bills for the Department of Homeland Security. Included in the House bill (H.Rept. 108-169) and Senate bill (S.Rept. 108-86) is funding for first responder grants, fire grants, state and local law enforcement airport reimbursement, port security grants, and funding to accelerate the installation of explosive detection machines in the nations 429 commercial airports.
In a major victory for cities, both the House and Senate have included significant funding for high-threat areas, although both funding levels are below the $800 million provided in FY 2003. Senators Charles Schumer (NY) and Arlen Specter (PA) offered a floor amendment that would have increased the high-threat funding to $1 billion, but the amendment failed on a tie vote of 48-48 despite garnering bipartisan support.
State and local law enforcement reimbursement was reduced from $225 million in both the House and Senate due to a policy change whereby airports are no longer required to have an enforcement presence at every check point at all times.
Following is a comparison of some of the key programs under the bills, which will now head to a conference committee:
|Office for Domestic Preparedness||$1.9 billion||$1.2 billion|
|Basic State Formula Grant Program|
|State and Local Law Enforcement||$500 million||$500 million|
|Terrorism Prevention Grants (New)|
|High-Threat Urban Areas||$500 million||$750 million|
|Infrastructure Grants||$200 million||0|
|Citizens Corps||$45 million||$50 million|
|Technical Assistance to States||$32 million||$30 million|
|Firefighter Grants||$750 million||$750 million|
|Transportation Security Administration||$5.1 billion||$5.3 billion|
|State and Local Law Enforcement||$160 million||$170 million|
|Procurement of Explosive Detection Systems||$100 million||$150 million|
|Installation of Explosive Detection Systems||$235 million||$309 million|
|Coast Guard||$4.7 billion||$6.8 billion|
|Port Security Grants||$100 million||$150 million|