New York lawmakers Peter King and Nita Lowey sent a letter to President Obama today imploring him to meet New York’s financial needs for homeland security in his proposed budget for the fiscal year 2012.
Peter King serves as the chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, and Lowey is the only New Yorker on the group’s Appropriations Subcommittee. Neither King nor Lowey resides within the five boroughs, but both stressed the importance of homeland security and anti-terrorism programs in the New York City metropolitan area, which they called the “nation’s most at-risk city.”
“A continued federal, state and municipal collaboration in protecting the homeland is absolutely imperative,” the letter stated. “We urge you to maintain substantial funding for the state homeland security grant program, urban area security initiative, and assistance to firefighter grant programs, which help bolster our law enforcement and public safety workforce and training.”
The letter also urged the president to continue to invest in the Travel Security Administration for air travel safety, and to continue funding for the Coast Guard’s Maritime Safety and Security Team, which Obama’s budget request for FY 2011 proposed (unsuccessfully) to eliminate.
“It’s clear that we have to bring federal spending under control,” said King, “but we cannot afford to shortchange our homeland security needs, particularly those of New York City, which remains al Qaeda’s top terror target.”
President Obama’s budget request is due on February 14th.