MITCHELL E. DANIELS, JR.
OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET
COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS
APRIL 11, 2002
Mr. Chairman, Mr. Thompson, Members of the Committee, I am pleased to
be here this morning to discuss homeland security. The bills under review
this morning are meant to improve the way the Federal government is structured
regarding homeland security needs. Pursuant to the management responsibilities
inherent in my role as the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, I
am here to comment on the organizational issues involving a coordinated homeland
security effort within the Administration and to ensure they are openly discussed
between the Executive Branch and the Congress.
Our nation learned a terrible lesson on September 11th. The characteristics
of American society that we cherish -- our freedom, our openness, our great
cities, our modern transportation systems -- make us vulnerable to terrorism
of catastrophic proportions. This vulnerability will exist even after we bring
justice to those responsible for the events of September 11th. Indeed, the
threat of mass-destruction terrorism has become a reality of life in the 21st
Century. It is a permanent condition to which not just America, but the entire
world must adjust.
The federal government must have as its top priority securing the
homeland from future terrorist attacks. This will involve major new programs
and significant reforms by the federal government, several of which are described
in the FY 2003 Budget. But it will also involve new or expanded efforts by state
and local governments, private industry, non-governmental organizations, and indeed
all Americans. The higher priority we all now attach to homeland security has
already begun to ripple through the land.
Homeland security is a challenge of monumental scale and complexity.
It will not be cheap, easy, or quick. Achieving our homeland security objectives
will require vast sums of money, strenuous labor, and many years. Our work has
already begun, and it will continue. The American people should have no doubt
that ultimately we will succeed in weaving a proper and permanent level of security
into the fabric of America.
This Presidents FY 2003 budget reflects not just our absolute commitment
to achieving a much more secure homeland, but also our determination to do so
in a manner that preserves liberty and strengthens our economy.
September 11th and Our Immediate Response
The September 11th terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the
Pentagon have presented an unprecedented challenge to our nation. The response
has been, and must continue to be, equal to that challenge. In the immediate
aftermath of the attacks, Congress swiftly appropriated $40 billion to compensate
victims, aid reconstruction, wage war against terrorism, and strengthen our
defenses at home. In the seven months since September 11th, funding provided
for homeland security purposes has helped to:
increase the number of air marshals on our airlines;
support the largest criminal investigation in U.S. history;
acquire enough medicine to treat up to 10 million more people for
anthrax or other bacterial infections;
investigate the sources of terrorist funding, and then freeze the
financial assets of more than150 individuals and organizations connected to
deploy hundreds of Coast Guard cutters, aircraft, and small boats to
patrol the approaches to our ports and protect them from internal or external
acquire equipment for certain major mail sorting facilities to find
and destroy anthrax bacteria and other biological agents of terror;
station 8,000 National Guard troops at baggage-screening checkpoints
at 420 major airports; and,
strengthen our intelligence capabilities, with the objective of
detecting terrorist threats before they materialize, so that we can prevent
Homeland Security Strategy
The Administration is now taking the next step. When the President
established a new Office of Homeland Security, under the leadership of Governor
Tom Ridge, he directed the Office "to develop and coordinate the implementation
of a comprehensive national strategy to secure the United States from terrorist
threats or attacks." We have been building that strategy on many fronts, and
it is our intention to prepare a document this summer that will summarize
that strategy in one place. This strategy will meet four key tests:
The strategy for homeland security will be comprehensive and will
integrate the full range of homeland security activities into a single,
mutually supporting plan.
The strategy will be a national strategy, not just a federal government
strategy as the threat posed by terrorism does not fall solely within the
jurisdiction of the federal government. To defeat terrorism, the federal
government must work with states and localities and the private sector.
The strategy will outline a long-term plan to strengthen homeland security.
Finally, the strategy will include measures by which we can evaluate
progress and allocate resources. These objectives will set the goals for
federal departments and agencies. They will also give guidance to state and
local governments and the private sector.
At the same time we craft a national strategy, the Administration will
begin work immediately on four urgent and essential missions for the defense
of our homeland: ensuring state and local first responders (firefighters,
police, and rescue workers) are prepared for terrorism; enhancing our defenses
against biological attacks; securing our borders; and, sharing information
and using information technology to secure the homeland.
These four missions lead our homeland security agenda -- but they are
not the whole of it. We must also finish the job of securing our airways. In 2003, the new Transportation Security
Administration (TSA) will strive to meet the tight deadlines and rigorous aviation security
requirements set by Congress. In addition, we also propose a robust expansion in domestic law
enforcement work. The 2003 Budget requests enhancements to the capabilities
of the FBI and other law enforcement/intelligence agencies. The Presidents
Budget for 2003 includes total spending for homeland security that would rise
to $38 billion in 2003 -- an $18 billion increase over the total for 2002,
and a virtual doubling of the pre-September 11th levels.
On March 21st the President submitted a $27.1 billion supplemental
budget request to Congress to address the War on Terrorism, Homeland Security
and Economic Recovery. Funding for items included in this package meet the
following criteria: they are true emergencies; they address an immediate and
known requirement, and they cannot be met with existing funds. In most
cases, the funds would be required to be obligated this fiscal year. Of this
amount, $5.2 billion was provided for additional homeland security needs.
Office of Homeland Security
In developing the FY 2003 Budget, there was an extraordinary level of
cooperation between OMB and OHS. OMB has dedicated staff and managers working
with OHS, and many more are engaged on homeland security on an issue-by-issue
basis. This arrangement has been very productive. OHS is focusing its review
and advice on building the capacities we need to fight terrorism in the most
effective and efficient way. OMB adds its programmatic and budgetary knowledge
to ensure that we are utilizing the right resources and tools to build that
capacity. We expect that this arrangement will continue as we develop the
national strategy summary, and as the Administration works to develop the FY 2004
Budget, and beyond.
While the Office of Homeland Security coordinates, consults with and
provides advice to OMB and agencies throughout the government, Governor Ridge
does not have operational authority over any federal agency. The roll-out of
the Homeland Security Advisory System is illustrative of how the Governor
coordinated with various agencies, but ultimately handed over the operational
aspects of the final product to a Department -- which, in this case, is the
The Administration recognizes and endorses the legitimate desire of
Congress to have full access to the information it needs to make legislative
decisions with regard to the nations homeland security. Through an extensive
variety of means, the Administration will act to provide Congress with responsive
answers to its information needs. Governor Ridge has regularly met with Members
of Congress to provide extensive information on homeland security. In fact,
since October 8, Governor Ridge and his staff have held over 100 meetings with
Members of Congress and their staff, and they plan to continue these meetings
in the weeks ahead. He has also offered to meet with the committees of jurisdiction
in a non-testimonial format at their convenience, and he has personally participated
in over thirty-five meetings on Capitol Hill. The Governor will continue to
work closely with Congress, including the relevant Committees, in a manner
consistent with this practice. During the next two weeks, he will be participating
in a number of Congressional meetings, including one with the House Government
Reform Committee and another with the Chairmen and Ranking Members of the
House Appropriations Committee and its subcommittees.
As this record demonstrates, the Administration is committed to
keeping Congress appropriately informed about homeland security issues.
As to formal testimony, this Administration will adhere to the same policy
that Presidents of both parties have long followed -- and that Congress has
long respected. As a matter of precedent, the Presidents immediate White
House advisors, such as Governor Ridge, do not testify before Congress.
The President has said from the outset that the structure for organizing
and overseeing homeland security may evolve over time as we all learn more
and as circumstances change. It is possible that the National Strategy now
underway may recommend continuation of the current arrangement; it is also
possible that the National Strategy may recommend an arrangement different
from the current one. One possibility might include a structure similar to
the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). It is already clear,
however, that such a homeland office would be substantially larger in size
and scope. Moreover, many believe the "drug czar" model is not well suited
for operational authority.
If it is determined that the Director of Homeland Security should have
operational authority, the review could lead to a proposal for extensive restructuring
of homeland security functions. Should the review ultimately recommend to the
President a different homeland security structure, there is a chance it may resemble
Senator Liebermans bill. A potential obstacle in this case is the uncertainty
whether either Executive Branch agencies or the Congress would set aside jurisdictional
territoriality enough to embrace such a far-reaching proposal. Our experience
to date with minor transfers of responsibility illustrates the difficulty of
this approach. Should the President opt for such a course, surely we would need
leadership from you and your committee to ensure its success.
In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, the Administration is committed to securing
the homeland and keeping Congress appropriately informed on homeland security
matters. We are pleased to discuss with Congress alternative ways of organizing
Homeland Security that effectively meet the needs of the American people and
their legislative representatives.
The Nation faces new kinds of threats from new kinds of enemies. Defeating
those threats will be the great challenge and the great achievement of this
generation of Americans.