From: DEFEND AMERICA LIST [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
Sent: 25 November 2002 21:22
To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Subject: News From DefendAMERICA.mil
President Signs Homeland Act, Nominates England as Deputy
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Nov. 25, 2002 - When President Bush signed the Homeland
Bill into law today, he established a new cabinet-level department to
the safety of the American people.
Before Bush signed the bill in a White House ceremony, he announced he
nominate former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge to be the first
Homeland Security. He also said he will nominate Navy Secretary Gordon
England to be deputy at the 170,000-worker agency.
The new department will analyze threats, guard borders, coordinate
responses and focus the "full resources of the American government on
safety of its people," Bush said.
The measure passed Congress with bipartisan support. It had been held up
because of concerns about a provision that would allow the president to
shift workers to areas where they were needed. Critics said the new
would erode federal civil-service protections. Administration officials
managers needed more flexibility to protect America.
Bush thanked union leaders present at the signing ceremony. "We look
to working with you to make sure that your people are treated fairly in
new department," he said.
The bill is a response to the Sept. 11 attacks in New York and
The idea was to place all federal agencies involved with homeland
under one umbrella. The few exceptions are the military, the Federal
of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency.
Bush said the government is doing everything it can to enhance security
airports, power plants and border crossings. "We've deployed detection
equipment to look for weapons of mass destruction," he said. "We've
law enforcement better tools to detect and disrupt terrorist cells which
might be hiding in our own own country."
He said the Homeland Security Act is the "next logical step" in
America. The act amalgamates 22 agencies into one department. "To
their mission, leaders of the new department must change the culture of
diverse agencies, directing all of them toward the principal objective
protecting the American people," Bush said. "The effort will take time
focus and steady resolve."
He said adjustments in the department will be needed as this is the
reorganization of the U.S. government since the 1947 act that
the Defense Department.
He said the new department would analyze information collected by U.S.
intelligence agencies and match that against American vulnerabilities.
new agency will work with other agencies, the private sector, and state
local governments to harden America's defenses against terror, Bush
The agency will focus on safeguarding the U.S. computer network, and
against the growing threat of chemical, biological or nuclear assaults.
The Department of Homeland Security will be one point of contact for
and local officials and place security for all U.S. transportation
under one roof.
Bush noted the Department of Homeland Security will end duplication and
overlapping responsibilities. "Our objective is to spend less on
administrators and offices and more on working agents in the field; less
overhead and more on protecting our neighborhoods and borders and waters
skies from terrorists," he said.
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