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Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. BILIRAKIS. Mr. Chair, I rise today in support of H.R. 5855, the Fiscal Year 2013 Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act. I want to commend Chairman ADERHOLT and Ranking Member PRICE for their work on this bill, which provides vital security funding while also being fiscally responsible.

As the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications, I am particularly pleased that the Appropriations Committee rejected the Administration's proposal to create a new National Preparedness Grant Program. The proposal in the President's budget request lacked detail and was developed without any input from emergency response providers. I appreciate Chairman ADERHOLT's recognition that this proposal requires consideration by the Committee on Homeland Security. That consideration is underway. The Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness has been working with FEMA and stakeholders to consider this and other proposals for grant reform. Until that review is complete, it is this body's direction that FEMA should continue to administer the grant programs in accordance with the statutory authorities in the 9/11 Act and the SAFE Port Act.

With that, I urge all Members to support this bill.


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