STATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION POLICY
(Senator Inouye, D-Hawaii)
The Administration strongly supports Senate passage of H.R. 2892, with the committee-reported text of S. 1298, making appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010.
As we face difficult economic and fiscal decisions, it is important to make efficient and effective investments. The Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2010, as considered by the Senate Committee, makes important investments in transportation systems, cyber security, innovation and job creation, security for our borders, and emergency response. This legislation serves as an important piece of the Nationís economic recovery.
The Administration would like to take this opportunity to share additional views regarding the Committee's version of the bill.
Federal Protection Service (FPS)
The Administration is pleased that the Committee supports the transfer of FPS to the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD). This transfer will properly align the activities of FPS and NPPD, while allowing Immigration and Customs Enforcement to focus on its key immigration enforcement mission. The Administration plans to provide additional details to the Congress in support of the FPS transition and realignment of these responsibilities in the next few weeks.
The Administration appreciates the Committee's support for E-Verify by fully funding the request and including a three-year reauthorization to continue operations. This critical program supports immigration enforcement and promotes compliance with immigration laws.
Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMAís) Disaster Relief Fund
The Committee significantly underfunds the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF). In an effort to implement a more transparent funding process for DRF, the Administration's $2 billion request is based on a methodology that incorporates historical costs associated with FEMA's response for non-catastrophic incidents.
The Administration appreciates the Committee's support for termination of the Loran-C radio navigation system. The Administration supports the Committee's aim to achieve an orderly termination through a phased decommissioning beginning in January 2010, and the requirement that certifications be provided to document that the Loran-C termination will not impair maritime safety or the development of possible GPS backup capabilities or needs.
The Congress is urged to provide the requested funding to reform immigration fees. Eliminating the practice of passing on costs for refugees and asylees to other applicants for immigration benefits is an important first step to improve the accuracy, transparency, and fairness of immigration fees.
The Administration strongly urges the Congress to provide additional resources to support and expand successful immigrant integration programs across the country.