GAO report finds lack of clear priorities hampering national preparedness and response
| 09.06.2007 | 08:20:53 | Views: 2776 | ID:
September 6 '07: The Washington Post reported that according to a newly-released report to Congress by the Government Accountability Office, several hurdles, including a lack of funding, unclear priorities and continuing reorganizations hamper the Department of Homeland Security's ability "to achieve its mission of preventing and responding to terrorist attacks or natural disasters."
"The GAO states that after the largest government merger in more than half a century, the DHS met fewer than half of its performance objectives, or 78 of 171 directives identified by President Bush, Congress and the department's own strategic plans" However, DHS officials have disputed the findings of the report, the Post wrote.The Post summarized the report's conclusions, writing that "the 320-page document states that the DHS has made the least progress toward some of the fundamental goals identified after the 2001 attacks and again after Hurricane Katrina in August 2005: improving emergency preparedness; capitalizing on the nation's wealth and scientific prowess through "Manhattan Project"-style research initiatives; and eliminating bureaucratic and technical barriers to information sharing." The report also says that given the enormity and complexity of the agency, however, it did not expect DHS to fulfill all the goals or reorganizations. Officials in the department also said that progress has been made and that the GAO should have looked at the benchmarks in terms of a risk-based approach.
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