House lifts DHS restrictions on use of grants for fusion centers

The House last week passed legislation that would force DHS to lift some restrictions on how state and local authorities can use DHS grants to fund state and local intel fusion centers.

The measure would ensure states and local authorities can use up to 50 percent of grant money awarded under two grant programs to pay for personnel costs for terrorism prevention activities such as the fusion centers that share terrorism-related information from federal, local and state sources. The measure would also allow authorities to use those grant funds to pay for intelligence analysts at the centers regardless of whether they are new hires or veteran employees.  The bill overrides limitations DHS placed on use of the funds, based on DHS interpretation of a 2007 law.

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