Homeland Security Research and Development: Funding, Organization, and Oversight

Homeland Security Research and
Development Funding, Organization, and
Genevieve J. Knezo
Specialist in Science and Technology Policy
Resources, Science, and Industry Division
P.L. 107-296, the Homeland Security Act, consolidated some research and
development (R&D) in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). For FY2007,
Congress appropriated an R&D budget (excluding management/procurement) totaling
about $1.0 billion, about 22% less than FY2006, and representing the first decline in
DHS’s R&D funding since the inception of DHS in 2002. DHS is mandated to
coordinate all federal agency homeland security R&D, which was requested at aboutth
$5.1 billion. During the 110 Congress, contentious policy issues relating to DHS’s
R&D are likely to include priority-setting, management, possible waste in research and
technology programs, and improving program performance results. This report will be
Funding for Homeland Security R&D. Federal agency funding for homeland
security R&D was requested at about $5.1 billion for FY2007, about the same amount as
in FY2005 and FY2006. The American Association for the Advancement of Science
(AAAS) reports that the top three agency supporters are the Department of Health and
Human Services (DHHS), specifically the National Institutes of Health (NIH) at 40% of
the total, DHS with about 23%, and the Department of Defense (DOD), with 21%.1 See
Table 1. Other funding agencies in descending order are the National Science Foundation
(NSF), the Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA), the National Aeronautics, and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of
Energy (DOE), and the Department of Commerce (DOC). DHHS (NIH) manages most2
of the federal civilian effort against bioterrorism. DHS R&D focuses largely on

1 See CRS Report RL31914, Research and Development in the Department of Homeland
Security; and CRS Report RS21542, Department of Homeland Security: Issues Concerning the
Establishment of Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs).
2 See CRS Report RL31719, An Overview of the U.S. Public Health System in the Context of
Emergency Preparedness.

technology-oriented projects, which for FY2007, emphasize countermeasures against
weapons of mass destruction (WMD). DOD’s homeland security R&D portfolio includes
work on countering chemical and biological threats, emergency preparedness, and R&D
supported by the Technical Support Working Group (TSWG), a State Department/DOD
group that coordinates interagency R&D on new technologies to combat terrorism.3
USDA’s work includes physical protection for agricultural resources and maintaining
security of the food supply. NSF’s homeland security R&D focuses on protection of
critical infrastructures and key assets and includes cybersecurity R&D. EPA has focused
on toxic materials research. In the DOC, R&D at the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) deals with protecting information systems. In the past, DOE’s
counterterrorism R&D included work on materials, detection of toxic agents, genomic
sequencing, DNA-based diagnostics, and microfabrication technologies.4 NASA’s
homeland security R&D deals with aviation safety and remote sensing.
Table 1. Federal Homeland Security R&D Funding by Agency
(Budget authority, dollars in millions, figures are rounded off)
AgencyFY2002FY2003FY2004FY2005FY2006FY2007%Chg. FY2006
ActualActualActualActualEstimateRequestto FY2007
USDA $175 $155 $40 $161 $105 $100 -5 .0%
DOC 20 16 23 59 62 68 9.7%
DOD 259 212 267 1,079 1,166 1,074 -7 .9%
DOE 50 48 47 67 68 71 4.4%
DHHS 1 7 7 2 , 6 5 3 1 , 7 2 4 1 , 7 9 5 1 , 8 9 9 2 , 0 1 4 6 . 0 %
(NIH) (162) (1 ,633) (1 ,703) (1 ,774) (1 ,878) (1 ,993) (6 .1%)
DHS 266 737 1,028 1,240 1,281 1,149 -10.3%
OT 106732 3 1 67.0%
EPA 95705233 52 92 5.
NS. 73738889 93 83 -9.%
NSF 229 271 321 326 329 371 12.8%
Al Other48473242414712.6%
Total 1,4993,2903,6264,8935,0995,070-0.6%
Total, Non-DOD$1,240$3,078$3,359$3,814$3,933$3,9961.6%
Note: Adapted from an AAAS table onFederal Homeland Security R&D by Agency,” available at
[http://www.aaas.org/spp/rd/fy07.htm], which uses data from OMB, 2003 Report to Congress on Combating
Terrorism and Budget of the U.S. Government FY2007. The AAAS table includes funding for the conduct of
R&D and R&D facilities, uses revised estimates of DHS R&D, and notes that DOD expanded its reporting of
homeland security funding beginning in 2005. Regular and supplemental appropriations are included. Problems
with obtaining R&D data are explained in CRS Report RL32482, Federal Homeland Security Research and
Development Funding: Issues of Data Quality and in U.S. Government Accountability Office, Combating
Terrorism: Determining and Reporting Federal Funding Data, Jan. 2006, GAO-06-161.
Creation of a Department of Homeland Security and Other Laws. The
Homeland Security Act of 2002, P.L. 107-296, created DHS and, as one of its four
directorates, a Directorate of Science and Technology (S&T). The Under Secretary for
S&T, created by Title III, has responsibility for most of DHS’s research, development,
test, and evaluation (RDT&E). The Under Secretary’s responsibilities are to: coordinate

3 See CRS Report RL31615, Homeland Security: The Department of Defense’s Role.
4 See CRS Report RL32481, Homeland Security R&D Funding and Activities in Federal
Agencies: A Preliminary Inventory; and CRS Report RS21617, Homeland Security: Extramural
R&D Funding Opportunities in Federal Agencies.

DHS’s S&T missions; in consultation with other agencies, develop a strategic plan for
federal civilian countermeasures to threats, including research; except for human health-
related R&D, conduct and/or coordinate DHS’s intramural and extramural R&D; set
national R&D priorities to prevent importation of chemical, biological, radiological,
nuclear and related (CBRN) weapons and terrorist attacks; collaborate with DOE
regarding using national laboratories; collaborate with the Secretaries of USDA and
DHHS to identify biological “select agents;” develop guidelines for technology transfer;
and support U.S. S&T leadership. If possible, DHS’s research is to be unclassified.
Title III transferred to DHS DOE programs in chemical and biological security R&D;
nuclear smuggling and proliferation detection; nuclear assessment and materials
protection; biological and environmental research related to microbial pathogens; the
Environmental Measurements Laboratory; and the advanced scientific computing research
program from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. DHS was mandated to
incorporate a newly created National Bio-Weapons Defense Analysis Center and USDA’s
Plum Island Animal Disease Center, but USDA is permitted to continue to conduct R&D
at Plum Island. Coast Guard and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) R&D are
now located within DHS. DHS’s Secretary is to collaborate with the DHHS Secretary to
set priorities for DHHS’s human health-related CBRN R&D.
Title III authorized establishment of the Homeland Security Advanced Research
Projects Agency (HSARPA) to support applications-oriented, innovative RDT&E in
industry, FFRDCs, and universities. Extramural funding is to be competitive and merit-
reviewed, but distributed to as many U.S. areas as practicable. The law mandated creation
of university-based centers of excellence for homeland security; five multi-year awards
ranging between $10 million to $18 million have been made for centers on: risk and
economic analysis of terrorism at the University of Southern California; agro-security at
the University of Minnesota and at Texas A&M; on behavioral and sociological aspects
of terrorism at the University of Maryland; and on high consequence event preparedness
and response at Johns Hopkins. DHS and EPA jointly fund a cooperative center on
advancing microbial risk assessment at Michigan State; there are plans for a DHS-
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory cooperative center on computational challenges
for homeland security. DHS also supports a university fellowship/training program,
which plans to train 200 students in 2007, down from 300 in 2006, and up to 15
postdoctoral fellows. Regarding intramural R&D, DHS may use any federal laboratory
and may establish a headquarters laboratory to “network” federal laboratories. DHS relies
mostly on the following DOE laboratories: Los Alamos, Lawrence Livermore, Sandia,
Pacific Northwest and Oak Ridge. A Homeland Security Institute (HSI), an FFRDC
operated by Analytic Services Inc., funded in May 2004, is authorized to conduct risk
analysis and policy research on vulnerabilities of, and security for, critical infrastructures;
improve interoperability of tools for field operators and first responders; and test
prototype technologies. A clearinghouse was authorized to transfer information about
innovations. In addition, DHS created the Interagency Center for Applied Homeland
Security Technology (ICAHST), which validates technical requirements and conducts
evaluations for threat and vulnerability testing and assessments.
P.L. 107-296 gave the DHS Secretary special acquisitions authority for basic,
applied, and advanced R&D (Sec. 833). The Special Assistant to the Secretary, created
by Sec. 102 of the law, is to work with the private sector to develop innovative homeland
terrorism technologies. DHS issued rules for liability protection for manufacturers of

anti-terrorism technologies pursuant to the Support Anti-Terrorism by Fostering Effective
Technologies (SAFETY) Act of 2002, part of P.L. 107-296. DHS also issued a rule to
handle critical infrastructure information that is voluntarily submitted to the government
in good faith that will not be subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act
(Federal Register, Feb. 20, 2004, pp. 8073-8089). Sec. 1003 of P.L. 107-296 authorized
NIST to conduct R&D to improve information security. P.L. 107-305, the Cyber Security
Research and Development Act, authorized $903 million over five years for NSF and
NIST R&D and training programs to combat terrorist attacks on computers.
For FY2007, DHS requested funding for R&D per se of $1.1 billion, and Congress,
in P.L. 109-295, appropriated $1.0 billion, about 22% less than the estimated FY2006
level. This is the first reduction in the agency’s R&D budget since DHS was created in

2002. The FY2007 budget increased R&D support for explosives countermeasures,

interoperable communications, and cybersecurity. Other areas of R&D, including
university centers, received decreased funding. See Table 2. The FY2006 appropriations
law had increased R&D funding above the President’s requested levels for biological
countermeasures, explosives countermeasures, DNDO, rapid prototyping, SAFETY Act,
interoperable communications, and critical infrastructure. See CRS Report RL33428,
Homeland Security Department: FY2007 Appropriations and CRS Report RL33345,
Federal Research and Development Funding FY2007, (section on DHS).
Interagency Coordination Mechanisms. The Office of Science and
Technology Policy (OSTP) is a statutory office in the Executive Office of the President;
its director advises the President and recommends federal R&D budgets. The OSTP
Director is responsible for advising the President on homeland security (Sec. 1712 of P.L.
107-296). The Director has chaired the National Security Council’s Preparedness Against
Weapons of Mass Destruction R&D Subgroup, comprised of 16 agencies. OSTP also
manages the interagency National Science and Technology Council (NSTC)’s Committee
on Homeland and National Security to help set R&D priorities in eight functional areas.
OSTP’s interagency work has focused on such topics as anthrax, regulations to restrict
access to research using biological “select agents,” access to “sensitive but unclassified”
scientific information, policy for foreign student visas, access to “sensitive” courses, and
advanced technology for border control. Pursuant to Executive Order 13231, OSTP
worked with the interagency President’s Critical Infrastructure Board to recommend
priorities and budgets for information security R&D. The working group on bioterrorism
prevention, preparedness, and response, established by Sec. 108 of P.L. 107-188, the
Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002, consists
of the DHHS and DOD Secretaries and other agency heads. The Homeland Security
Council (HSC), created by P.L. 107-296, provides policy and interagency guidance. An
HSC Policy Coordination Committee on R&D was created pursuant to Executive Order
13228. Former DHS Under Secretary McQueary testified that, by the fall of 2004, all
U.S. government R&D “relevant to fulfilling the Department’s mission will have been
identified and co-ordinated as appropriate.” He inventoried DHS’s many R&D-related
interagency activities in testimony before the House Committee on Science on February
16, 2005. In 2006, GAO issued a report dealing with Plum Island, DHS and USDA Are
Successfully Coordinating Current Work, But Long-Term Plans Are Being Assessed
Oversight Issues. Controversial issues about DHS’s R&D include preventing
conflicts of interest in awarding R&D funds since many DHS S&T portfolio managers

are hired from, and will return to, national laboratories which are among the contenders
for DHS R&D contracts and awards’ decisions, which according to GAO, are often
undocumented (based on DHS Needs to Improve Ethics-Related Management Controls
for the Science and Technology Directorate, Dec. 2005, GAO-06-206); providing
Congress with more detailed information regarding priority setting and R&D budgeting
and spending (see H.Rept. 109-476 and S.Rept. 109-273 on DHS’s FY2007
appropriations request); monitoring HSARPA’s mission and performance in transitioning
homeland security technology to the field;5 assessing possible waste in technology
procurement;6 improving the effectiveness of DHS’s S&T (only one program of six that
were evaluated using OMB’s Performance Assessment Rating Tool (PART) received a
score of “highly effective);”7 developing S&T priorities that meet responder needs and
benefit from external experts’ advice; monitoring the adequacy of cybersecurity R&D;8
and improving linkages between providing rapid scientific and technical expertise and
decisionmaking and responding to weapons of mass destruction attacks and incidents.9
DHS’s Acting Inspector General testified on January 26, 2005 before the Senate
Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs that the S&T Directorate
needs to better integrate threat assessment information into its priority-setting and to
improve inter- and intra-agency coordination.
Executive Order 13311 transferred to DHS the President’s responsibilities to design
procedures to protect sensitive unclassified homeland security information that were
mandated by Sec. 892 of P.L. 107-296. DHS issued guidance for its own information
control procedures in Management Directive System MD Number: 11042.1, 01/05/05, but
has not yet released government-wide guidance on this controversial topic. For additional
information, see CRS Report RL33303, “Sensitive But Unclassified” Information and
Other Controls: Policy and Options for Scientific and Technical Information.
Legislation. During the 109th Congress, the House passed H.R. 1817, a DHS
authorization bill, on May 18, 2005; it was referred to the Senate Committee on
Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. It would have required creation of the
Technology Clearinghouse mandated in P.L. 107-296, a homeland security technology
transfer program, and a working group, including the DOD Secretary, to advise the
clearinghouse to identify relevant military technologies. It would also have required
assessment of whether DHS procurements are candidates for the litigation and risk
management protections of P.L. 107-296, established a university center of excellence for
border security, authorized academic and other types of cybersecurity R&D, and allowed
DOE laboratories to participate in proposal writing and other activities of the university
centers of excellence.

5 Zack Phillips,”DHS Launches Major Review of R&D Wing as Lawmakers Call for More
Focus,” CQ Homeland Security, Mar. 22, 2006.
6 Scott Higham, et al., “Contracting Rush for Security Led to Waste, Abuse,” Washington Post,
May 22, 2005.
7 DHS, Science and Technology Directorate, FY2007, Strategic Context, p. 5.
8 Andrea L. Foster, “Panel of Researchers Urges Government to Step Up Spending on Study of
Cybersecurity,” Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 18, 2005.
9 James Jay Carafano and David Heyman, DHS 2.0: Rethinking the Department of Homeland
Security, Special Report 02, The Heritage Foundation, Dec. 2004.

On June 14, 2006, the Homeland Security Committee reported two bills. An
amended H.R. 4941, the Homeland Security S&T Enhancement Act, would have required
DHS to transfer anti-terrorism technology developed by federal agencies or the private
sector, to develop standards for first-responder communications equipment, require the
government to share results of tests of equipment with first responders, to develop a
strategic plan for S&T activities, and to work to develop guidelines for researchers about
the potential homeland security implications of their work. H.R. 4942, the Promoting
Anti-Terrorism Capabilities Through International Cooperation Act, would have required
DHS’s S&T Directorate to support homeland security R&D with U.S. allies. It was
reported (H.Rept. 109-674), amended, and approved on September 26, 2006. H.R. 5814,
an authorization bill, reported by the Homeland Security Committee on July 19, 2006,
would have streamlined SAFETY Act procedures to develop anti-terrorism technology,
enhanced biosurveillance systems, and created an assistant secretary for cybersecurity.
Table 2. Department of Homeland Security R&D Budget
(Budget authority in millions of dollars; figures are rounded off)
Directorate or ProgramFY2005FY2006FY2007 Appropriation
Science and Technology Directorate1 5$1,043$1,262$713
Biological Countermeasures 363376350
NBACC Construction23500
Chemical Countermeasures539460
Explosives Countermeasures204487
Radiological/Nuclear Countermeasures3 51232090
Threat Awareness664335
Stand a r d s 40 35 22
R&D Support of DHS Components557986
University and Fellowships706250
Emerging Threats4118
Rapid Prototyping4763519
Counter MANPADS 6110940
Interoperable Communications212627
SAFETY Act1075
Critical Infrastructure Protection 274035
Cyber Security181720
R&D Consolidation1 0990
Rescission of Unobligated Funds -4-20-125
Pacific NW Laboratory002
Border and Transportation Security (TSA)1 17800
Domestic Nuclear Detection Office3 500273
U.S. Coast Guard RDT&E1191917
Total DHS R&D$1,240$1,281$1,003
Source: Adapted from AAAS, Table II-6, “DHS R&D Falls in 2007 Budget,” Feb. 28, 2006. AAAS used OMB data
and agency supporting documents to compile data. Table notes: 1. The FY2006 budget consolidated TSA R&D within
the S&T Directorate; 2. Construction funds for National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center; 3.
Radiological and nuclear countermeasures will transfer to the DNDO in 2007; 4. Will be consolidated into a new
Emergency and Prototypical Technology line in 2007; 5. R&D items only. Non-R&D components and line items are
excluded. For additional information on appropriations action for DHS, see CRS Report RL33345, Federal Research
and Development Funding: FY2007, Table 7. Data in Table 7 include some management and administrative obligations
that do not appear in the AAAS-based data in this short report.