Obama to cut NYC anti-terror funding even after Times Sq. bombing attemptBy S.A. MILLER
New York Post
May 13, 2010
WASHINGTON – The Obama administration will announce tomorrow it has slashed anti-terror funds for New York City, despite the attempted Times Square bombing less than two weeks ago that underscored the enormous threat to the city.
The Department of Homeland Security informed New York officials yesterday that grants to the city were cut 27 percent for mass transit security and 25 percent for port security.
The mass transit funds dropped $42 million, from $153 million last year to $111 this year.
Port security funds suffered a $11.2 million cut, from $45 million to $33.8 million, officials said.
The timing of the announcement drew howls from New York lawmakers on Capitol Hill, whose recent pleas for increased anti-terror spending in the Big Apple – along with the same plea from Mayor Bloomberg – fell flat.
They said the Times Square bomb attempt shows that New Yok remains the top target for terrorists and that the city deserves the lion’s share of federal spending on security.
"For the administration to announce these cuts two weeks after the attempted Times Square bombing shows they just don’t get it and are not doing right by New York City on anti-terrorism funding," Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said.
He urged the White House to reconsider its decision.
"Instead of distributing funding all over the country, they should focus their attention where the greatest threat exists — right here in New York," he said.
Homeland Security officials did not immediately respond to questions about the funding level. But they previously said the city receives ample funding, despite cuts.
Rep. Pete King (R-LI), the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, said the cuts were "dangerous and unconscionable."
"The threat against New York City, the top target of al-Qaeda, is increasing, not decreasing," he said, noting that the city has been the target of at least 11 foiled terror plots since 9/11.
"The Times Square attempt served as a wake-up call for many, but apparently not for the Obama Administration, which should be dramatically increasing New York City’s homeland security funding, not decreasing it."
It is not the first time President Obama has short-changed the city on homeland security dollars.
Obama has moved for the second year in a row to eliminate a $30 million program called "Securing our Cities."
It would create a ring of radiation detectors around the city to monitor for nuclear and dirty bombs.
Last year, Schumer and King succeeded in fighting to restore $20 million for the nuke detectors along highways, toll plazas, bridges, tunnels and waterways.
The administration also decided to redeploy the Coast Guard’s Maritime Safety and Security Team in New York to Boston Harbor.