State and Local Preparedness for Terrorism: Selected Policy Issues [Updated December 19, 2002] [open pdf - 131KB]
"While the federal government has resources at hand for responding to terrorist attacks, the proximity of state and local first responders insures they will almost always be the first to arrive at the site of an attack. For this reason, the preparedness of state and local governments has become a salient national issue. The President's 'National Strategy for Homeland Security', issued in June 2002, proposes a number of measures to enhance state and local preparedness for terrorist attacks, particularly those involving weapons of mass destruction. Most of these measures, presently undertaken by FEMA and several other agencies, but will be transferred to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which Congress authorized in the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-296). Readers interested in analysis of state and local preparedness functions of the new Department of Homeland Security should see CRS Report RL31490, 'Department of Homeland Security: State and Local Preparedness Issues.' This report will be updated as circumstances warrant."
CRS Report for Congress, RL31266