House Homeland Security Committee Schedule for March 10-14, 2014

Mar 7, 2014 Issues: Border Security, Oversight of DHS Management

The House Homeland Security Committee has announced the following hearings for next week.

WEDNESDAY, March 12 at 10 a.m.

Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security

The Arizona Border Surveillance Technology Plan and its Impact on Border Security

311 Cannon House Office Building

Witnesses Include:

  • Mr. Mark Borkowski, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Technology Innovation and Acquisition, Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • Ms. Rebecca Gambler, Director, Homeland Security and Justice Issues, U.S. Government Accountability Office

Subcommittee Chairman Candice Miller (R-MI) on the hearing: “Since 2005, the Department of Homeland Security, through its Secure Border Initiative Network (SBInet) program, has worked to incorporate cutting edge detection and surveillance technology along the southwest border. The initial plan called for a remote surveillance system to be completed by 2013 at an estimated cost of $8 billion. Unfortunately, the program which was cancelled in 2011, was plagued with procurement and technological problems. 

“On Wednesday, we will hear from Customs and Border Protection and the Government Accountability Office about current and future border surveillance plans and their impact on our border security. Specifically, I am interested in hearing about the lessons learned from previous failures and how, going forward, we can ensure taxpayer dollars provide tangible, measurable results when it comes to securing our border.”

THURSDAY, March 13 at 2 p.m.

Homeland Security Committee

The President’s FY 2015 Budget Request for the Department of Homeland Security

311 Cannon House Office Building

Witness Includes:

  • The Honorable Jeh Johnson, Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Chairman Michael McCaul (R-Texas) on the hearing: “The President’s budget again shows that his priorities do not match up with the American people’s. Ultimately, his proposal increases fees to taxpayers, travelers and businesses while decreasing the overall budget for securing the homeland. This means the American people will pay more out of pocket while the Department cuts key security programs such as those to detain criminals and conduct aerial patrols of the border.

“Americans know the borders are not secure and yet the Administration is aiming to decrease funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement by almost $250 million – including the reduction of detention beds by almost 3,500 – and wants to cut the Coast Guard by more than $300 million, resulting in fewer ships interdicting drugs and potential criminals bound for the United States. Meanwhile, the President increases funding for more bureaucracy including throwing hundreds of millions of dollars at a new headquarters instead of spending precious funds on keeping Americans safe.

“The President’s proposal shows a distinct disconnect between what the American people need and what the Administration wants. Ultimately, the proposed budget proves that the Administration believes its own false narrative that the threats to this country are diminishing, and the Committee will have many questions for DHS at next week’s hearing.”

*LIVE video of the hearings will be available here.

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