Senate Passes Menendez Amendment For Risk-Based Port Security Grants

Senate Passes Menendez Amendment For Risk-Based Port Security Grants

Measure requires single standard for risk assessment at U.S. ports, will ensure port security grants go to ports with most demonstrated risk

Washington - U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) today hailed the Senates passage of his amendment requiring the Bush administration to award port security grants using a single, consistent standard in determining risk. The Senate voted unanimously to include Menendezs measure in the final Port Security Bill set for passage late Thursday.

We must determine risk the same way for all U.S. ports to ensure that those who face the greatest risk receive the funds they need, Menendez said. And by passing this amendment, the Senate has ensured that we do just that. This measure requires the federal government to establish a single standard for determining risk at our ports a requirement that will make the American people safer.

While the original port security bill included a form of risk-based funding for port security grants, it did not create a level and consistent playing field in the determination of risk. The Menendez amendment will require the federal government to set one standard for all U.S. ports in how they conduct risk assessments. The measure additionally requires the Department of Homeland Security to report back to the Congress exactly how the risk assessments are used in distributing port security grants.

# # #