Protecting New York
As the nation's most populous city, the financial, cultural, and media capital of the world, the site of the World Trade Center attacks, and still terrorist target number one, New York City has many immediate needs to protect and prepare itself for future acts of terrorism. The city's fire department was especially hit hard by 9/11, losing 343 of its bravest. The lack of a reliable radio system was a main problem on 9/11 that may have contributed to unnecessary loss of life and also was a problem during the 1993 World Trade Center attacks and the blackout in August 2003. To remedy this troublesome issue once and for all, I have introduced the “9/11 Can You Hear Me Now Act” that would direct the Department of Homeland Security to specifically fix the radio system for New York firefighters. The goal is to ensure that the radios are functional everywhere in New York - including every building and every subway tunnel. I have also worked to draw attention to a system of funding for firefighters that is weighted heavily against the cities that need help the most. Because the FIRE Act grant program - the one Homeland Security program specifically for firefighters - was established pre-9/11 to help rural fire departments. The result: less populated areas like Montana are at the top of the funding list, while FDNY is shortchanged. I have also worked to draw attention to the lack of security for our nation's rail and transit systems and have held events with people on the front lines to highlight what more we need to do.
06/30/05 - H.R.3172, Passenger Security Act of 2005
04/21/05 - H.R.1794, 9/11 Can You Hear Me Now Act