-- Sequestration and political maneuvering still affecting planning and progress, general consensus to invest in border security remains firm
MOUNTAIN VIEW, California, Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The 2014 funding request for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) indicates a number of program cuts that emphasize the Secretary of Homeland Security's resolve to lessen the deficit on the department's behalf. The total discretionary funding request for fiscal year 2014 amounts to an estimated $48.5 billion.
Recent Frost & Sullivan Aerospace and Defense (aerospace-defence.frost.com) analysis finds the DHS 2014 budget request is $1.6 billion less than the 2013 request; however, the U.S. government is still operating under a continuing resolution. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) make up approximately 59 percent of the total 2014 DHS request.
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The challenge to reduce the U.S. deficit has placed a strain on the DHS's, as well as other government departments', ability to properly fund all critical agencies, including CBP, USCG, FEMA and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Although not to the point of dysfunction, the agencies are forced to operate at a lesser efficiency and with fewer personnel.
"Directives such as the recent memorandum generated by the Office of Management and Budget to reduce the 2015 budget an additional 10 percent adds more difficulty to an already complex organization," said Frost & Sullivan Aerospace and Defense Senior Industry Analyst John Hernandez. "Cuts in funding make it extremely difficult for the DHS agencies to meet their individual operations with worn and antiquated equipment."
It is forecasted the DHS will spend less on research and development for security technologies. Instead, the department will turn to commercial off-the-shelf products that have a strong history of proven success and can integrate easily with technologies already in place. In addition, with the recent resignation of U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, a new DHS head will have his or her own priorities and objectives, possibly changing how and where funding is applied.
The 2014 DHS budget requests about $78 million for the Integrated Fixed Tower initiative, a project that could eventually be valued at over $1 billion dollars. The commitment to continue this project is yet another indicator of how important the DHS considers border security.
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US Department of Homeland Security Budget Assessment, 2014
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