DHS OCIO spending request cut by House

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Information technology programs at the Homeland Security Department would generally be cut under the House-approved version of the DHS fiscal 2013 spending bill.

The House approved the spending bill (H.R. 5855) June 7 by a vote of 234-182. Included in it is a proposed 23 percent reduction against the spending request for the DHS office of the chief information officer. One reason for the reduction is that the House would rather the DHS OCIO not spend $64.8 million on data center consolidation. In the report accompanying  the bill, House appropriators say they support the effort to consolidate DHS data centers to two facilities, but don't want to pay for it next year "due to the need to offset significant shortfalls in the President's budget request."

Automation modernization at the Customs Border Protection appears to gain a big boost, with the House voting $700.24 million for the ongoing effort, significantly more than the $327.53 million requested. However, that increase is due to placing salaries and expenses into the CBP Automation Modernization account. In general, the House voted to reduce the CBP office of information technology by $24 million, and would cut funding for the Automated Commercial Environment (a large portion of the automation modernization effort) by $2 million, to $138.79 million.

Immigrations and Customs Enforcement Automation Modernization likewise appears to be the object of House munificence, with lawmakers voting for $232 million for the effort, far more than the $30.5 million requested.

But, there too the increase is the result of realignment of funds into the ICE Automation Modernization account--$161.56 million of salaries and expenses and $41.04 million from the US-VISIT program for management of the Arrival Departure Information System.

The House in fact voted to reduce spending by $1.1 million "due to ICE's failure to provide statutorily required reports and due to the flawed budget request regarding CBP's access to fee collections."

For more:
- go to the THOMAS page for H.R. 5855

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