ROSKAM VOTES TO REIN IN GOVERNMENT SPENDING
Congressman Peter J. Roskam (R-IL) today voted against the 2008 Homeland Security Appropriations bill due to the inclusion of provisions that weaken border security, dilute TSA review policies while increasing spending 13.6 percent over last year's bill.
"It is my solemn duty to protect my constituents against the threat of terrorist attacks," said Roskam. "It is also a priority to protect them against unreasonable tax increases and excessive government spending. While I support many of the provisions of the 2008 Homeland Security Appropriations Bill, I could not in good conscience vote in support of a bill with $2 billion of extraneous spending over last year's spending levels."
The 2008 Homeland Security Appropriations bill, with its additional spending, would increase the projected 2008 deficit by 9 percent.
"In addition to the wasteful increase in spending, this legislation hampers our efforts to secure the border by mandating overly cumbersome requirements before beginning to build a fence on the southern border," continued Roskam. "It also removes a cap on the hiring of TSA screeners for airport security which was designed to fortify our homeland security by employing the latest technology and ensuring efficacy of procedures. Removing this cap allows TSA to just throw more people at a problem rather than trying to solve it."
"While overall I was not pleased with the outcome of this spending bill, there were a few bright spots. I was extremely pleased to see my number one priority in this bill met. I requested increased funding for SAFER and Assistance to the Firefighter Grant programs, which will assist first responders in recruitment and training, as well as ensuring they are fully equipped," stated Roskam. "This is money well spent in Illinois' 6th Congressional District due to the high threat areas Chicagoland first responders serve in."
"The increase in funding for these important programs will enable Addison and other local fire departments to achieve a baseline level of preparedness to respond to incidents," said Addison Fire Chief Leigh Fabbri. "Funding for these programs has enabled fire departments and fire districts to obtain much needed equipment and training. I commend Congressman Roskam for his leadership on this important issue."