80th Annual Meeting

WHEREAS, urban areas are the highest risk for terrorist attacks in the United States; and

WHEREAS, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) federal grants are critical for building and sustaining capabilities to prevent, respond and recover from acts of terrorism; and

WHEREAS, the DHS grant program must remain aligned with the 9/11 Act; and

WHEREAS, the preservation of the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) would strengthen the National Preparedness Grant Program because it would target limited resources to the highest risk urban areas;  with targeted and effective funding; and

WHEREAS, the existing UASI governance framework works well and already reflects the principles of the Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA) because it has built and sustained region-wide capabilities that are cross-jurisdictional, readily deployable, and multi-purpose; and

WHEREAS, homeland security grant periods must balance the goal of efficiency with the need for flexibility; and

WHEREAS, a rigid 24-month grant period will prevent jurisdictions from undertaking innovative, multi-year projects that support long-term planning and strategic development; and

WHEREAS, Congress should seek to minimize the layers of bureaucracy involved in administering DHS grant programs as these layers create unnecessary costs and delay,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the U.S. Conference of Mayors urges Congress to align DHS grant program requirements with the 9/11 Act to focus on risk when assessing highest need areas, preserve UASI as a standalone grant program, and maintain the current grant cycle and flexibility for homeland security funding.