Aaron Roth, principal, and leader of our Federal Strategies practice shares insights and perspectives about the challenges facing DHS this year as the President’s budget request goes before Congress.
Decreased funding is not the only hurdle facing DHS. There is always a highly politicized debate over mission priorities; legislative challenges, given the fragmented oversight structure; and the standard reliance on continuing resolutions.
Roth emphasizes that DHS is one of only two federal departments facing budget decreases this year. The budget request does not keep pace with inflation and shifts funding from base programs to infrastructure investments.
This is the administrations third budget request to Congress and continues to prioritize additional investment for cybersecurity, improvements to customer experience, and infrastructure resilience. Operational staffing emerges as a new funding priority in 2024. These increases are offset by over $2 billion in fee increases and decreases to immigration enforcement and federal assistance grant programs.
To address these challenges, the administration should start by developing a Homeland Security Strategy complementary to the National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy to clearly articulate consistent priorities that serve as the foundation for the budget request. The recently released National Defense Strategy identified Defending the Homeland as the top defense priority. Decreasing the DHS budget certainly does not reflect that prioritization.
Our nations security cannot afford the status quo. We must ensure that both homeland security and homeland defense priorities are clearly defined and adequately funded. Read the full article on GTSC’s Homeland Security Today