Civilian National Security Infrastructure - The Department Of Homeland Security
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In late November 2002 President George W. Bush signed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) bill, thereby officially creating one of the most important domestic security agencies. The new department is the result of reorganizing twenty-two federal agencies with some 180,000 employees into the DHS, which is headed by the director of homeland security. (See Figure 8.7.) Former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge was named the first secretary of the DHS. Efforts to establish the DHS were spurred by the September 11 terrorist attacks of 2001. According to the National Strategy for Homeland Security, homeland security is "a concerted national effort to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce America's vulnerability to terrorism, and minimize the damage and recover from attacks that do occur." Six aspects of the department are: (1) intelligence and warning; (2) border and transportation security; (3) domestic counterterrorism; (4) protecting critical infrastructure and key assets; (5) defending against catastrophic threats; and (6) emergency preparedness and response.
The president keeps abreast of issues relating to homeland security through the director of the DHS and an Advisory Council on Homeland Security. This council is primarily divided into counterterrorism and cyberspace security divisions and features policy coordination committees that oversee plans between state and local governments. The FY2004 budget for the new department was $36 billion. For FY2005, $40 billion was proposed. According to Securing Our Homeland: U.S. Department of Homeland Security Strategic Plan (Washington, DC: Department of Homeland Security, 2004), the department's immediate goals include identifying and eliminating
areas of overlap and omission within the twenty-two agencies, developing results-oriented approaches, and monitoring performance so that funds are allocated to the most successful efforts.