Feb 28, 2005 – An editorial in Monday's New York Times indicates that spending Homeland Security funds on the Virgin Islands is an unwise expenditure.
The editorial states, "The ports facing the greatest threat are ones like New York and Los Angeles, located in population-dense areas. But New York, which handles 12 percent of the nation's cargo traffic, received just 7 percent of the grants, and Los Angeles was similarly shortchanged. At the same time, security money was found for ports in St. Croix in the Virgin Islands and Martha's Vineyard, Mass."
Donna Christensen, V.I. delegate to Congress, reacted to the editorial. She said she is writing a letter to the New York Times to challenge the editorial.
"The Virgin Islands applications for port security funding were well justified," said Christensen. "I worked hard with the committee and the department to make them understand that there were critical assets in the territory that should be given attention," Christensen said. "I know that they have based their comments on a lack of knowledge of the territories and the facilities that applied for and received funding."
In a press release issued Monday, she continued, "This editorial is an illustration that there is close scrutiny of how we acquire and expend funds in the Virgin Islands. I am concerned for all federal funding and the fact that some of our agencies are hampered by not having full control over their funding, underscoring our need for more transparency and accountability in government."
To read the editorial (See "Follow the Port Security Money").
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