Since FY2003, the Department of Homeland Security has only allocated funds based upon risk in one of its programs, which is the Urban Area Security Initiative program (Reese, 2005, 1-2). All of the other programs are based upon a statutory guaranteed share of available funds or on state population (Reese, 2005, 2). In August 2004, a recommendation was made that programs should be based upon risk. HR1544 would allow funds to be allocated based upon risk. The amount that would be allocated to each state would be based upon the discretion of the DHS Secretary and the First Responder Grants Board (Reese, 2005, 4). Risks would be based upon the following criteria: target of a prior terrorist attack; had a higher Homeland Security Advisory System threat level than the nation as a whole; large population or high population density; high threat and risk related to critical infrastructure; and international border or coastline; bordering at-risk sites or activities in a nearby jurisdiction; unmet essential first responder capabilities; and any other factor as determined by the DHS Secretary (Reese, 2005, 5-6). Risk factors that will be evaluated are validity, relevance, reliability, timeliness, and availability (Reese, 2005, 10-11). Threats come in the form of potential terrorist attacks, including biological or chemical agents, WMD incidents, sniper and shooting incidents, and car and suicide bombs or in the form of potential natural disasters and technical disaster threats including, hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes, landslides, and accidental hazardous materials incidents (Reese, 2005, 12).

For risk assessment, there are several criteria that are used. Population is the number of people in the state in relation to the nation as a whole (Reese, 2005, 13). The population of New York state on July 1, 2015 was 19,795,791 relative to the population of the United States for the same date of 321,418,820 ( Another factor is population density (Reese, 2005, 13). New York has a population density of 411.2 ( Other factors include critical infrastructure, seaports, chemical facilities, military facilities, federal facilities, dams, electrical power plants, food and agricultural centers, oil and natural gas refineries and pipelines, and financial centers (Reese, 2005, 13-14). Transportation assets include rail and mass transit systems, bridges and tunnels, airports, as well as other factors including stadiums and arenas, educational institutions, skyscrapers and large commercial buildings, international borders and coastlines, and tourism (Reese, 2005, 14-16). New York has a great number of these risk factors. It has 18 large commercial airports and 67 smaller public airports (infrastructurereportcard,org, 2015, 4). There are 17,456 bridges and over 7,000 dams. There are 10,147 regulated water systems that provide water to 20 million people. New York has 180 state parks, one of which is Niagara Falls State Park, which is the largest public park in the United States. There are 35 historical sites. The state has 240,000 miles of roadway and over 100 transit systems. Because of these facts, New York State should have access to risk-based funding formula for homeland security.


Quickfacts. (2016). Retrieved 27 November 2016 from….

Reese, S. (2005). Risk-based funding in homeland security grant legislation: Analysis of issues for the 109th Congress. Retrieved from

Report card for New York’s infrastructure. (2015). Retrieved 27 November 2015 from… ullReport _9.29.15_FINAL.pdf1.

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