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  • Special Report posted October 24, 2013 by Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., David Inserra, Jonathan Lesser, Ph.D., Matt A. Mayer, Brian Slattery, Jack Spencer, Katie Tubb After Hurricane Sandy: Time to Learn and Implement the Lessons in Preparedness, Response, and Resilience

    Sandy Makes Landfall Hurricane Sandy lived up to expectations in October 2012, delivering a powerful punch with heavy rains, strong winds, and significant storm surges. After taking 69 lives in the Caribbean, Sandy hit the eastern United States, where it claimed 72 more lives.[1] Coastal communities in the Mid-Atlantic were among the hardest hit by the storm. Flooding…

  • Testimony posted June 26, 2013 by Matt A. Mayer Are We Prepared? Measuring the Impact of Preparedness Grants Since 9/11

    Testimony before Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Emergency Management, Intergovernmental Relations, and the District of Columbia  United States Senate  June 25, 2013 Matt A. Mayer Visiting Fellow Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies My name is Matt A. Mayer. I am a Visiting Fellow in the Douglas and…

  • Backgrounder posted June 18, 2013 by Michael P Downing, Matt A. Mayer Preventing the Next “Lone Wolf” Terrorist Attack Requires Stronger Federal–State–Local Capabilities

    In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon terrorist attack, America can learn a few vital lessons on how to stop the next “lone wolf”–type assault. But while this nation’s commitment to individual liberty is one of its greatest strengths, it is also a vulnerability: In order to eradicate the risk of further terrorist attacks, America would have to become the kind of nation…

  • Issue Brief posted April 12, 2013 by Matt A. Mayer Homeland Security: Developing a Strategic Road Map for the Future

    As the deadline for the second Quadrennial Homeland Security Review (QHSR) approaches at the end of this year, much attention is being given to the record of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and what the department’s proper role should be. Ultimately, the strategy cannot simply be to maintain the status quo, continuing down the same path for the next 10 years…

  • Backgrounder posted February 12, 2013 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Jessica Zuckerman, Matt A. Mayer, Paul Rosenzweig, Brian Slattery The Second Quadrennial Homeland Security Review: Setting Priorities for the Next Four Years

    In March, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will mark its 10th anniversary of existence. DHS was established to prevent terrorist attacks and to reduce the vulnerability of, and minimize the damage to, the U.S. in the case of attacks. Ten years later, the concept of homeland security has come to embody an "all hazards" approach, focusing not only on terror…

  • Issue Brief posted January 4, 2013 by Patrick Louis Knudsen, Matt A. Mayer Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill: Starting the New Year with Bloated Deficit Spending

    Just days after concluding the fiscal cliff debacle, Congress is about to embark on another spending spree—this time exploiting loopholes in the budget process to pile on new so-called emergency spending. The House on Friday will consider the first installment of a bloated $60 billion measure ostensibly aimed at providing relief for the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Most of…

  • Issue Brief posted December 13, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Hurricane Sandy: Disaster Aid Request Too Big

    The Obama Administration has requested $60.4 billion for the response and recovery related to Hurricane Sandy.[1] This enormous request vividly illustrates the problems with the federal government’s and the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) current approach to natural disasters. It also demonstrates the profligate spending approach taken by the Obama…

  • Issue Brief posted November 28, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Five Lessons from Hurricane Sandy

    Some East Coast politicians seem to view Hurricane Sandy and the federal money for the recovery effort as some sort of lottery that they have hit. This mentality is best summed up in a Bloomberg News headline: “Sandy Seen as Stimulus, Thanks to Rebuilding.”[1] This view is grossly mistaken. Nonetheless, this episode provides an opportunity to teach America’s political…

  • Commentary posted November 28, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Too Many Disasters are Nationalized

    The devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy will drain down the funds remaining in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Disaster Relief Fund and push the National Flood Insurance Program further into debt. With the rapidly approaching federal fiscal cliff, it’s time we had a serious national discussion over the future of these programs. When large-scale disasters…

  • Heritage in Focus: Will Hurricane Sandy Blow the Election? Audio Recorded on November 2, 2012 Heritage in Focus: Will Hurricane Sandy Blow the Election?

    Heritage Visiting Fellow Matt Mayer discusses Hurricane Sandy and it's possible impact on the Presidential election on this week's Heritage in Focus. Jackie Anderson hosts. To get regular updates on Heritage in Focus podcasts, visit our RSS feed or subscribe on iTunes.…

  • Commentary posted October 30, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Sandy's a FEMA-Sized Storm

    In a shameless attempt to politicize Hurricane Sandy, The New York Times rushed out an editorial, "A Big Storm Requires Big Government," attacking conservatives for advocating a rebalancing of disaster response responsibilities. The Times says the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) "was put back in working order by President Obama, but ideology still blinds…

  • Issue Brief posted October 3, 2012 by Michael P Downing, Matt A. Mayer The Domestic Counterterrorism Enterprise: Time to Streamline

    Over the last decade, the domestic counterterrorism enterprise in the United States has added a significant amount of much-needed capacity. From the expansion of Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTFs) by the FBI to the development of intelligence fusion centers by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the resources now dedicated to gathering information, analyzing…

  • Commentary posted July 28, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Illegals Exploit Obama's Amnesty Program

    President Obama's unilateral decision to implement parts of the failed DREAM Act legislation has allowed "dreamers" to game the system and stay in the U.S. illegally, according to two union leaders representing immigration agents. Chris Crane, who represents Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers, explained at a press conference: "Prosecutorial…

  • Issue Brief posted July 27, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer Homeland Security Grants: Greater Focus Needed with Finite Federal Funding

    The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) just announced the final allocations for the 2012 homeland security grants. Since 9/11, Congress has allocated over $40 billion in funds to states and localities. The majority of this funding came from DHS, but funding also came from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS),…

  • Issue Brief posted June 27, 2012 by Matt A. Mayer, John Malcolm Childish Reaction to Supreme Court Immigration Ruling: Obama Administration Ends a Key Joint Program with Arizona

    Although both Arizona and the United States prevailed in different parts of the Supreme Court’s immigration ruling this week, the Obama Administration’s immediate response seems like a childish slap in the face of the Supreme Court, Arizona, and any other state that might challenge its authority. Justice Antonin Scalia noted in his dissenting opinion, which would…