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Statement on Signing the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2004

October 01, 2003

Today, I have signed into law H.R. 2555, the "Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2004." This is the first regular appropriations act for the Department of Homeland Security.

The executive branch shall construe as calling solely for notification the provisions of the Act that purport to require congressional committee approval for the execution of a law. Any other construction would be inconsistent with the principles enunciated by the Supreme Court of the United States in 1983 in INS v. Chadha. Such provisions include the purported approval requirements in the appropriations for expenses for the development of the United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology project; customs and border protection automated systems; immigration and customs enforcement automated systems; operations, maintenance, and procurement of marine vessels, aircraft, and other related equipment of the air and marine program; expenses of the United States Secret Service; and also in sections 504, 511, and 516. To the extent that section 519 of the Act purports to allow an agent of the legislative branch to prevent implementation of the law unless the legislative agent reports to the Congress that the executive branch has met certain conditions, the executive branch shall construe such section as advisory, in accordance with the Chadha principles.


The White House, October 1, 2003.

NOTE: H.R. 2555, approved October 1, was assigned Public Law No. 108-90.

George W. Bush, Statement on Signing the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2004 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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