The House Appropriations Committee released draft Fiscal Year 2021 funding legislation for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today that proposes a modest 0.5 percent total funding increase for DHS, and a 10 percent budget boost for its Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) component.

The bill would provide $50.72 billion of discretionary funding for DHS, versus the $50.47 billion that the agency received last year.  Of that total, $48.1 billion would be non-defense discretionary funding, the committee said.

“With the nation facing threats ranging from the COVID-19 pandemic to terrorism and targeted violent extremism, our bill provides DHS with the funding it needs to protect American communities, including vital investments in disaster preparedness, secure seaports and borders, safety for air travelers, and cybersecurity,” House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security Chairwoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif., said.

The bill proposes that CISA receive over $2.25 billion in funding for FY2021 – up $239 million from last year – with large sums dedicated to procurement, construction, and improvements ($396.4 million), and research and development ($14.4 million) per the text of the legislation.

According to the committee’s summary of proposed CISA funding, $32.6 million is allocated toward cyber defense education and training, $51.54 million would go toward cybersecurity mission system engineering, $11.6 million would be invested in establishing a Joint Cyber Center for National Defense, $10 million would support vulnerability management infrastructure, and $18 million would support supply chain risk management. The committee allocated $6 million for the agency’s Hunt and Incident Response Teams. The funding legislation sets aside $8.1 million for cyber assistance to state and local governments, and $25.1 million for Next Generation Networks Priority Services.

“This bill will strengthen our security and keep Americans safe while upholding our American values of fairness and respect,” House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y., said. “Strong investments in modern, effective technologies will improve homeland security missions, from cybersecurity and disaster preparedness to border and maritime security.”

DHS’s Science and Technology Division (S&T) is allocated $755.3 million in FY2021 under the proposed funding bill, an $18 million increase. The funds include $41.6 million for University Centers of Excellence and $5.2 million for the Minority Serving Institutions program. S&T would receive $433.2 million for research and development.

Of note, Coast Guard appropriations emphasize the need for cybersecurity investments with $78 million for operational and asset readiness, including cyber, satellite, and other communications upgrades, and $26.9 million for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber, and Intelligence systems.

The draft legislation is scheduled for a markup by the House Appropriations Committee Homeland Security Subcommittee tomorrow morning.

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Katie Malone
Katie Malone
Katie Malone is a MeriTalk Staff Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.