U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) and U.S. Representative Mark S. Critz (PA-12) released the following statements in response to the Department of Justice's decision to close the NDIC:
"The Obama Administration's decision to close Johnstown's National Drug Intelligence Center is 100% wrong," said Senator Casey. "The NDIC has played a crucial role in fighting drug trafficking and gang violence in Pennsylvania and throughout the nation. Closing the facility will hurt jobs and the economy throughout the region in addition to hampering the efforts of local law enforcement. In the coming weeks and months, I will be working closely with Senator Toomey and Congressman Critz to help the workers impacted by the closure."
"It is extremely disappointing that the Obama administration has decided to shut down the National Drug Intelligence Center in Johnstown. As I have repeatedly told Justice Department officials, the NDIC serves an essential function and maintaining its operations in Johnstown is better for taxpayers than relocating those operations elsewhere. Among other reasons, it is also why I voted against the appropriations bill last November that enabled this administration to wind down the NDIC," Sen. Toomey said. "This decision is a significant blow to the Johnstown area, and I am committed to working with my congressional colleagues and other officials to help those impacted by this closure."
"Make no mistake about it, the decision to close NDIC was forced by House Republicans when they gave us only two options: 1) zero money and the immediate closure at the end of last year, or 2) $20 million with requirements to close the Center in 2012. I voted for the second option because $20 million kept NDIC alive and afforded us the opportunity to try and work with the Administration to save some jobs in Johnstown," said Congressman Critz. "Unfortunately, after months of attempting to work with Justice Department officials, the decision was made earlier this week by the Department to forgo keeping any future operations in Johnstown. This decision was both misguided and wrong. We will continue to work with employees impacted by this decision to assist them in finding jobs both within the Johnstown community and elsewhere."