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Begich Named to Committee on Homeland Security

Jurisdiction includes terrorism prevention, contracting oversight

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich has been named to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (HSGAC), a committee with jurisdiction over most aspects of Homeland Security, terrorism prevention, government oversight and contracting oversight. Of particular interest to Alaska will be the committee’s jurisdiction including Alaska Native Corporation 8(a) contracting and improving national security.

As part of the 112th Congress, Sen. Begich will remain on the Senate Committee on Armed Services, Veterans Affairs, Budget Committee, and the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

“I am pleased to add the Committee on Homeland Security to the list of where I can better serve Alaska and play a larger role in key Alaska issues,” Begich said. “The contracting oversight aspects regarding Alaska’s ANCs will give me another avenue to make sure Alaska’s unique needs are being heard. Whether it is fighting for funding to keep police and firefighters in our communities or reviewing government regulations to ensure proper protections for Americans while not stifling innovation or job creation, I look forward to getting to work and addressing these critical issues.”

The HSGAC also covers a number of other areas including:

· Jurisdiction over post offices

· Census

· Federal civil service

· Government oversight/Federal financial management

· Jurisdiction over most of DHS

· Shared jurisdiction Coast Guard, TSA, and Customs and Border Patrol/Immigration and Custom Enforcement

· Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (essentially plenary jurisdiction to investigate anything involving the federal government).

· Police/Firefighter funding

Begich said the new committee assignment is a good addition to his other committees, all of which have major implications for Alaska.

“Together with the issues of the Commerce Committee -- such as the Coast Guard, fisheries, aviation, and more – Armed Services, Veterans, and the Budget; Homeland Security is a big issue for Alaskans. Whether it’s terrorism prevention, disaster recovery, or emergency preparedness, these are all areas Alaskans have key interests in,” Begich said.

Begich said he also sees an opportunity for his work on the Budget Committee to overlap with Homeland Security’s jurisdiction over government management and government expenditures.

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