Schumer, King: Restore $40M for dirty-bomb protectionby Reid J. Epstein
September 28, 2009
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) Sunday called for Congress and the Obama administration to reinstate $40 million to protect New York City against a so-called dirty bomb threat.
The initiative, called the Securing the Cities Program, aims to detect radiologic material as it enters the city through bridges, tunnels and on highways. Though the federal government has already spent $73 million on the project since 2006, $40 million in funding for 2010 was dropped from the 2010 budget by the Obama administration.
"New York City is always the number one target of terrorists," Schumer said. "If we let our guard down, it will make it easier for them to accomplish their evil goals."
King said the program, which funnels some money to areas bordering the city, is important because it can be more difficult to spot terrorist groups operating in suburban areas than in cities.
"It's harder to police what's going on in the suburbs than in the city," King said. "It's a lot harder to know what's going on than in a dense city neighborhood. You have more opportunity for a guy working in his basement or his garage."