You can see it now – at the next cabinet meeting, the Secretary of Homeland Security tries to buttonhole the president and asks – did I do something wrong? That’s because all the other “cool” Departments got big budget bumps, even the Pentagon got a 1.6 percent increase. The bone thrown to DHS was a measly 0.2 percent increase.
The increase in the president’s FY 2022 discretionary budget request comes to $52.0 billion for DHS up from (snicker) $51.9 billion enacted for FY21. Consolation prize: this figure does not include DHS mandatory spending for FY 2022, which has historically run at about five percent of the total, for an estimated $2.5 billion additional funding in FY 2022.
Cybersecurity – The request provides $2.1 billion for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), which accounts for the majority of DHS’s cybersecurity efforts. This is roughly 5.5 percent above the FY 2021 funding levels and is in addition to $650 million provided for CISA in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.The discretionary request also provides $20 million for a new Cyber Response and Recovery Fund. DHS is the lead federal agency responsible for coordinating federal efforts to safeguard government computer networks and the nation’s critical IT infrastructure.
Disaster Relief and Climate Change – The FY 2022 request includes $18.9 billion for “Disaster Relief,” an increase of $1.7 billion (9.6 percent) above current levels. The discretionary request expands DHS’s work with State and local communities to prepare for the impacts of climate change. The discretionary request invests an additional $540 million above the 2021 enacted level to incorporate climate impacts into pre-disaster planning and resilience efforts. TCS has long championed using funding to “prespond” to disasters.
Domestic Terrorism – The discretionary request provides a total of $131 million to prevent domestic terrorism. This funding supports research on the root causes of radicalization and enhanced community outreach. The discretionary request includes $20 million for grants to build local capacity to prevent targeted violence and all forms of terrorism, in addition to approximately $75 million available under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Homeland Security Grant Program.
Border Security – Historically, border security accounts for over one-third of the total DHS budget. The budget release does not include details on the Biden Administration’s proposed FY 2022 funding for U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency (CBP), the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement service (ICE), or the U.S. Coast Guard. But considering the overall department budget is flat and there have been boosts elsewhere, there will be pressure on these agencies.