Sen. Charles Schumer again criticized the Obama administration’s funding of New York’s anti-terror efforts Sunday, saying President George W. Bush had at times been better for the region than Obama.
“On this issue I would not give the Obama administration high marks,” Schumer said. “In its best years the Bush administration was better than this administration.”
Last weekend, after a sport utility vehicle packed with propane and other potential explosives was found parked in Times Square, Schumer called for “hundreds of millions of dollars” to be spent immediately to protect New York City. Sunday, he bemoaned the amount of New York-area funding from the Department of Homeland Security’s Urban Area Security Initiative.
In 2005, the metropolitan area received $207 million, or 25 percent of all UASI funding, according to Schumer’s office, but in each of the next four years, the amount received fell to between 17.5 and 18.5 percent of funds, between $124 million and $145 million.
In 2010, the region is due to receive $151 million, or 18.1 percent of UASI money. Schumer’s office said Nassau and Suffolk counties are due to receive about $4 million.
Schumer said Sunday New York should get half of all federal anti-terror funds. “Even if we got 25 percent [of the total], it would be a lot more money,” he said.
Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) said although UASI funds have increased every year since 2006, “it is still, however, far from enough.”
Department of Homeland Security spokesman Matthew Chandler said overall federal anti-terror funds for New York have increased since 2005.
“In 2009, DHS awarded more than $457 million to New York City to prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other threats – a 74 percent increase from 2005,” he said.