DHS Budget Cut by Congress, Will Mainly Affect Coast Guard

Lawmakers cut nearly $500 million from the Homeland Security Department's 2006 budget proposal on Wednesday for what they called repeated failures to update Congress on counterterror spending.

The Coast Guard took the bulk of the cut -- $466 million to its 20-year Deepwater project to modernize its ship and aircraft fleet.

"The department has been a reluctant partner and has ignored requests for information," said Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky., chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee that approved the Homeland Security spending bill. "It is a simple equation -- no information equals no money."

The House bill also eliminates $1.7 billion in fees the department hoped to generate by raising airline passenger costs by $3 per ticket. In all, the bill appropriates $31.8 billion for Homeland Security -- a 7 percent drop from the $34.1 billion that the department requested.