Next Wednesday, February 25th, the House Homeland Security Committee will hold a hearing entitled “DHS: The Path Forward” with Secretary Napolitano as the sole witness.
The hearing, which starts at 1000, will be in 311 Cannon HOB, but it will be webcast if you can’t be there. This blog may just cover it, too.
What should we expect? The Secretary’s prepared remarks will likely touch on a few key items. These include:
• The need to fill out the DHS leadership team, including getting her Dep Sec confirmed.
• A review of the initial results from her first ~8 action directives, most of which should have resulted in initial oral or written reports to her from the component agencies.
• A review of key programs in her crosshairs for change (i.e. state grants, REAL ID, SBInet, and Deepwater)
• Key offices in which she/the Administration plans to make changes, to include, possibly, the National Applications Office, the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD), the National Cyber Security Center, and the Office of Policy. Oh, and maybe FEMA.
• An update on the Quadrennial Homeland Security Review
This is all speculation, and perhaps wishful thinking, but I hope to see her take up the necessary effort to elevate the DHS Policy Office to that of an Undersecretary. While org chart shifts rarely solve problems, much would improve from this kind of a change. The first Quadrennial Homeland Security Review is under the leadership of that office, and it needs bureaucratic heft to do the job right, not to mention its other important responsibilities.