Terrorism Risk Determines Homeland Security Spending

July 5, 2008
A new study in Policy Studies Journal reveals that measures of terrorism risk are found to be positive determinants of homeland security funding, while measures of political influence and party affiliation of elected officials do not affect distribution of grants.

Tyler Prante of Central Washington University and Alok K. Bohara of the University of New Mexico statistically analyzed the funding pattern of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from 2004 to 2006. The distribution of state homeland security grants has been characterized as “pork barrel spending,” where political considerations and not terrorism risk are determining the allocation each state receives. Results indicate that DHS funding outcomes generally are consistent with assessed terrorism risk, in particular with respect to high-risk states. Researchers did not identify a positive relationship between party affiliation or congressional influence and funding outcomes.

“Though our results should be taken with appropriate consideration, we find the funding pattern to be inconsistent with the claim of DHS grants being distributed by political and not terrorism risk considerations,” the authors conclude.

For more information about the study, visit http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/119400327/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0.

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