The main goal of the program is to minimize the risk of the deployment of a nuclear or radiological weapon in major metropolitan areas of the U.S. This program offers support to local and state agencies to expand their capabilities in the analysis and detection of radioactive material.
“The Securing the Cities program is a key part of the department’s effort to protect the nation against the malicious use of nuclear and other radioactive materials,” DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson said. “Expanding this program to Houston and Chicago will bring these important capabilities to two more of our country’s largest metropolitan areas.”
DHS said that work in Houston is set to begin at the end of the current fiscal year with Chicago beginning its work at a later time — the exact start is dependent on the availability of program funding. Currently the program is established in the New York City and New Jersy region; Los Angeles and Long Beach regions; and the National Capital Region. Other large municipalities will be added to the program in the future.
Each region that is a part of the program will receive $30 million over a five-year period.