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October 30, 2017

LA Daily News: House reps: Shore up security funding at LA, Long Beach ports

By KEVIN MODESTI | Daily News PUBLISHED: October 30, 2017 at 6:43 pm | UPDATED: October 30, 2017 at 8:56 pm

SAN PEDRO – While praising efforts to protect the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports from terrorist and cyber attacks, members of Congress aired concerns Monday about threats to public safety and the economy if federal funding for maritime security programs isn’t raised to meet new threats.

At a rare on-site hearing of the House Homeland Security Committee at the Port of L.A., members of the panel and other Southern California representatives sounded generally pleased with what they heard. Officials from the two local ports, the Coast Guard, Customs and Border Protection and the longshore union testified about what has been done to protect the facilities in the wake of two security scares earlier this year. …

But Rep. Nanette Barragan, D-Carson, whose district includes the Port of L.A., said the issue of the wall looms over the matter of port security.

“These are conflicting interests,” Barragan said in an interview after the hearing. “We can’t put money toward the border wall without taking it away from something else.

“I believe that [the wall] would be a waste of money, and we should put more priority into airport and seaport security.”

The call for more federal funding for port security wasn’t unanimous, though. READ MORE