Press Release


Homeland Security Subcommittees to Hold Hearings on Bioterrorism Threats & DHS Acquisitions

Media Contact: Susan Phalen; April Ward (202) 226-8477

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tomorrow, the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency will hold the following hearings.

Using the Ebola outbreak as a case study, the Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications Subcommittee hearing will assess whether the Federal government is appropriately structured to respond to bio threats.

At the Oversight and Management Efficiency Subcommittee hearing, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) will release a new, fundamental report on the cost, schedule, and performance of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) largest acquisition programs and will review last month’s GAO report on day-to-day oversight of major acquisition programs.

WEDNESDAY, April 22 at 10:00 a.m.

Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications

“Strategic Perspectives on the Bioterrorism Threat”

311 Cannon House Office Building

Witnesses Include:

·         The Honorable Jim Talent, Former Senator from the State of Missouri; Former Vice-Chair of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism; Senior Fellow, American Enterprise Institute (AEI)

  • Dr. Charles B. Cairns, Interim Dean, University of Arizona College of Medicine,  Health Sciences Center
  • Ms. Marisa Raphael, Deputy Commissioner, Office of Emergency Planning and Response, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

Subcommittee Chairman Martha McSally, R-Ariz., on the hearing: “The risk of a biological terrorist attack to America is an urgent and serious threat. A bioattack could cause illness and even kill hundreds of thousands of people, overwhelm our public health capabilities, and create significant economic, societal and political consequences. Our nation’s capacity to prevent, respond to, and mitigate the impacts of biological terror incidents is a top national security priority. This hearing will highlight the threat of bioterrorism and ensure we’re taking the needed steps to prepare for and defend America against this threat.” 

WEDNESDAY, April 22 at 2:00 p.m.

Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency   

“Acquisition Oversight: How Effectively Is DHS Safeguarding Taxpayer Dollars?”

311 Cannon House Office Building

Witnesses Include:

·         Ms. Michele Mackin, Director, Acquisition and Sourcing Management, U.S. Government Accountability Office

·         The Honorable Chip Fulghum, Acting Deputy Undersecretary of Management and Chief Financial Officer, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

·         Dr. Cedric Sims, Partner, Evermay Consulting Group

Subcommittee Chairman Scott Perry, R-Pa., on the hearing: “Frontline personnel securing our borders, protecting our airports, and defending our shores must have the tools to successfully accomplish their mission. A broken acquisition process delivers tools that are late, cost more, and do less than anticipated. Watchdogs continue to find failures in DHS’s management of its acquisitions, which is unacceptable and puts taxpayer dollars at risk. This hearing will examine DHS’s major acquisition programs and processes and what must be done to fix long-standing problems and achieve better outcomes for the American taxpayer and frontline personnel.”  

*LIVE video of the hearings will be available here.