Washington, DC – Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-06), Chairman of the National Security Subcommittee, held a joint hearing today with Rep. John Mica (FL-07), Chairman of the Transportation and Public Assets Subcommittee, to conduct oversight of the Urban Area Security Initiative Grant Program. DeSantis issued the following statement:
“For the last two years, the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency denied Urban Area Security Initiative funding to Orlando because they felt that terrorists were ‘unlikely to attack’ Orlando. FEMA was wrong and last month’s attack in Orlando was the deadliest attack in the United States since 9/11.
The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency must allocate preparedness funding in a way that recognizes recent terrorist trends. FEMA must listen to the appeals of cities that are the closest to the threat as they are the first responders and best know the risks. This also includes adding Volusia and Brevard counties – both of which sent personnel to Orlando in response to the Pulse nightclub attacks – to the Orlando Metropolitan Statistical Area, which will better reflect the area’s true risk. Central Florida contains many so-called soft targets and DHS must take the appropriate action to protect this key region.”