Tags: new | york | obama | terror

NYC's 'Ring of Steel' Slated for Obama Budget Axe

Friday, 08 May 2009 03:34 PM

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NEW YORK - President Obama's proposed budget would cut an NYPD program to detect and repel radiological and nuclear terror threats.

City officials, including Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, have called the proposed cuts troubling and "disappointing."

The cut is part of President Obama's effort to trim $17 billion from the federal budget, according to administration officials.

The NYPD has already received more than $53 million in Homeland Security Department grants for the effort, including $20 million this year, according to Newsday. The department has used the money to arm officers and vehicles with radiation detectors and to recruit other law enforcement agencies, all in an effort to form the so called 'Ring of Steel,' a protective web around the city.

But without more grants in 2010, the department may have to scrap plans to rig bridges and tunnels with detection devices monitored by a new command post in lower Manhattan, the New York Post reported.

Such "line-by-line" cuts are dwarfed by overall spending increases in the new budget and just-passed stimulus legislation.

Obama's budget chief, Peter Orszag, acknowledged that much of the savings would get plowed back into other programs. But, he said, $17 billion isn't "chump change."

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