Monday, September 22, 2008

Homeland Security Subcommittee Meeting 09-24-08

The House Homeland Security Committee announced that it’s Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing and Terrorism Risk Assessment would be holding a hearing on 09-24-08. The hearing is entitled “A Report Card on Homeland Security Information Sharing”.


The following witnesses are currently scheduled:


  • Charles E. Allen, Under Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis, DHS
  • Michael E. Leiter, Director, National Counterterrorism Center
  • Leroy D. Baca, Sheriff, Los Angeles County Sherriff’s Department
  • Russell Porter, Director, Iowa Intelligence Fusion Center and Intelligence Bureau, DPS
  • John McKay, Professor from Practice, Seattle University School of Law

Information Sharing and Chemical Facilities


I would be very surprised if any of the witnesses directly addressed DHS information sharing with high-risk chemical facilities. To the best of my knowledge all that anyone could say is that there isn’t any information sharing. If I were a committee member I would certainly like to ask Secretary Allen and Director Leiter what plans the department had for developing and sharing intelligence information for and with high-risk chemical facilities.


Any vulnerability assessment or security plan can not be optimized without understanding the threat facing the facility. Most high-risk chemical facilities are not large enough to be able justify an intelligence collection and analysis operation. These facilities must be able to rely on federal, state and local security and law enforcement agencies for that intelligence assessment. Unfortunately no one seems to have thought of that.

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