Congressman Nadler Votes to Bring More Homeland Security Funds to New York

May 11, 2005

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The House of Representatives today passed new legislation that would shift allocation of homeland security funds away from state-based minimums and toward a distribution system based primarily on risk. Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) advocated for passage of H.R. 1544, “The Faster and Smarter Funding for First Responders Act.”

“There are real, known terrorist threats against specific targets in the U.S., and the homeland security grant programs in question today were created specifically to address these threats,” Congressman Nadler said.  “Distributing funding without regard to risk is not wise, cost-effective, or in the best interests of our nation's security.  These resources should go where they are needed, where there is the greatest threat of terrorism – period.”

Nadler attempted to offer an amendment to the bill to eliminate state minimums and distribute funding based solely on risk in order to better protect the highest priority targets and vulnerabilities of the nation.  His amendment was blocked from consideration by the Rules Committee.

Nadler questioned the Rules Committee decision, asking “how many times do we have to run for our lives – as we all did yesterday – before we realize this is not a game?  We are facing a serious threat of terrorism and we need to allocate homeland security funding based on risk.”

Although the bill does not eliminate state minimums, as Congressman Nadler would prefer, it does lower the state minimum allocations from 0.75 percent to 0.25 percent for most states and 0.45 percent for border states.  This will make more funding available to address real threats all across America, especially those in New York City.