• Lawmakers question TSA new uniform purchase

    Republican lawmakers want to know why the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has signed a contract worth  $50 million for new uniforms for the agency’s employees, at the same time that officials are complaining that budget cuts are causing staff shortages, flight delays, and longer lines at security checkpoints.

  • Lawmaker wants the FAA to keep Midway control tower operating

    Representative Dan Lipinski (D-Illinois) is not happy with the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) decision to add Midway Airport to the list of air ports whose air-traffic control towers  are subject to closing during overnight hours because of the federal budget cuts.

  • Obama, Hagel take pay cut to help sequester-affected federal employees

    President Barack Obama is following in the footsteps of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel by taking  a 5 percent pay cut to support federal workers who will be furloughed. Obama’s move will be backdated to 1 March, the first day of the sequester. The president’s yearly salary is $400,000, meaning that the cut will equal $20,000. Other senior administration officials, and some members of Congress and their staffs, have also announced that they will return a portion of their salary to the Treasury.

  • CBP rethinks budget cuts-related furloughs, over-time reductions

    Facing mounting criticism by political leaders and law enforcement in border states, the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency has decided to delay the implementation of two-week furloughs and cuts to overtime hours to its employees. The furloughs were originally set to begin later this month, and some said that reduction in hours worked by front-line personnel would have reduced security along the border.

  • U.S. to cut mineral payment to states by $110 million between now and August

    The U.S. Department of Interior  will cut its federal mineral payments to thirty-five states by $110 million due to the federal budget cuts. Different states will lose different amounts of money: Wyoming tops the list with $53 million in lost federal mineral payments over the next five months, while North Carolina is bringing up the rear, with the federal government cutting its mineral payments to the state by $7 (seven dollars) between now and August.

  • El Paso to hire more border officers to compensate for CBP budget cuts

    In El Paso, Texas, more than 100,000 residents depend on the activity across the bridges which connect the United States to Mexico. This includes $80 billion in trade a year that crosses the El Paso bridges and millions of shoppers who cross our bridges who spend more than $1.4 billion in the El Paso economy. Sequestration-related cuts, by promising longer wait times at border crossings, will hurt the local economy, and the El Paso city council is looking for ways to minimize the damage.

  • Budget cuts force the FAA to shut down 149 control towers

    The FFA will have to cut $637 million before 30 September. It plans to do so by give 47,000 employees two week furloughs, shutting down 149 control towers, and cutting overnight shifts at seventy-two different traffic facilities. Some worry about the impact these measures will have on air travel safety.

  • Lawmakers question DHS about cutting costs

    On Tuesday, during a hearing on inspector general recommendations, House lawmakers pointedly questioned DHS and Defense Department (DoD) officials  on departmental efforts to contain costs.

  • DHS asked to help shield Port of Hueneme from the effects of sequestration

    The Port of Hueneme is the only deep-water port between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Sequestration-related budget cuts mean the port’s six CBP and two Department of Agriculture inspectors can no longer work on Saturdays, or work overtime. This means that ships arriving at the port now have to wait outside until inspectors are available – at a cost to carriers of between $25,000 and $50,000 per day depending on the size of the ship. Port authorities and local businesses are worried that it will not be long before carriers direct their ships to other ports.

  • CBP sends out furlough notices to agency employees

    The Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has started sending furlough notices to its employees, the result of the agency’s need to cope with a 5 percent sequestration-related reduction in salaries and expenses. Border patrol agents say the cuts will hobble efforts to make the border more secure.


  • Budget cuts lead to uncertainty for military schools

    The sequestration has hit many federal agencies, but Defense Department schools and other military education programs  have more questions than  answers as to how the federal budget cuts will affect them.

  • Air Force, DoD curtailing air activity

    Federal budget cuts are starting to take their toll. Department of Defense (DoD) comptroller Robert Hale has sent out updated travel guidelines to DoD employees, which take account of  the $46 billion being cut from the Pentagon’s budget. In addition, training flight hours will be cut by 18 percent, which comes out to approximately 203,000 hours.

  • Airports yet to be affected by sequestration-related cuts

    Since sequestration went into effect last Friday, both  airport authorities and DHS have been saying that that passengers should prepare themselves for  longer wait times at security checkpoints. So far, airports in major cities have reported no discernible increase in wait time at security lines.

  • El Paso police receives a federal grant, but resident are worried about CBP budget cuts

    As the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency begins to deal with significant budget cuts and furloughs, the local law enforcement in El Paso, Texas has just received additional funding. Local police officers help residents handle encounters with illegal immigrants, but many residents believe U.S. Border Patrol agents are more suitable for the task.

  • U.S. arms sales, security partnerships to suffer as a result of sequestration cuts

    One area where sequestration-mandated budget cuts will be felt sooner rather than later is U.S. support for foreign militaries in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Training and security partnership engagements with allies will likely decline as well as the Defense Department must now operate with a $46 billion cut in its budget for fiscal 2013.