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Highlights

This report formally transmits the briefing in response to P.L. 110-329, the Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance and Continuing Appropriations Act, that required GAO for the fourth year to review the methodology the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) use to allocate Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) grants, including the risk assessment methodology they use to determine which urban areas are eligible to apply for grants. HSGP includes the State Homeland Security Program (SHSP) and Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) grants. Our objective was to identify any changes in the methodology for risk assessment and grant allocation for 2009 and to assess the reasonableness of the methodology. We analyzed DHS and FEMA documents including the fiscal year 2008 and 2009 risk analysis models and grant guidance and interviewed DHS and FEMA officials about the changes in the 2009 model. We did our work between October and December 2008 in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards. We briefed the mandated reporting committees with two briefings in November 2008 and December 2008 on the results of our analysis.

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