The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) sent a memo to agency heads July 19, 2002, freezing "all IT infrastructure system development and planned modernization efforts" budgeted at more than $500,000, pending a review of investments by the new security department. "An integrated and universal IT system would provide the best support for homeland security including earlier detection and faster response to potential threats," the memo states. "For this reason, existing investments should be assessed for appropriate use prior to procuring new IT infrastructure-related products and services."
The proposed Department of Homeland Security would combine 22 agencies, including the Secret Service, the Coast Guard and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Those agencies have already budgeted $364 million in IT spending projects in 2002 and $782 million in 2003. The OMB included a list of some of the projects that would be put on hold, which range from the Secret Service's telephone and pager program to FEMA's infrastructure systems.
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