Homeland Security: Effective Intergovernmental Coordination is Key to Success, Statement of Patricia A. Dalton, Director, Strategic Issues, Testimony before the Subcommittee on Government Efficiency, Financial Management, and Intergovernmental Relations, Committee on Government Reform, House of Representatives   [open pdf - 150KB]

In my testimony today, I will focus on the challenges facing the federal government in (1) establishing a leadership structure for homeland security, (2) defining the roles of different levels of government, (3) developing performance goals and measures, and (4) deploying appropriate tools to best achieve and sustain national goals. My comments are based on a body of GAO's work on terrorism and emergency preparedness and policy options for the design of federal assistance, our review of many other studies, and the Comptroller General's recent testimonies on the proposed Department of Homeland Security (DHS). In addition, I will draw on GAO's ongoing work for this Subcommittee, including an examination of the diverse ongoing and proposed federal preparedness programs, as well as a series of case studies we are conducting that examine preparedness issues facing state and local governments. To date, we have conducted interviews of officials in five geographically diverse cities: Baltimore, Maryland; Denver, Colorado; Los Angeles, California; New Orleans, Louisiana; and Seattle, Washington. We have also interviewed state emergency management officials in these states.

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