mulgated to the agencies to support their participation in programs that support these priorities.

The National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) is a natural place for relevant agencies to come together to discuss S&T for counterterrorism. However, the committee is concerned that NSTC does not currently appear to be as active as would be necessary to effectively carry out key coordinating discussions. A revitalized NSTC Committee on National Security or a new NSTC subcommittee on counterterrorism research and development, with participation from the highest levels of relevant agencies, would help OSTP and the agencies provide coordinated input to OHS and OMB.

To effectively lead interagency discussions about counterterrorism priorities and coordination of programs, the director of OSTP must be recognized as being the representative of the President’s decisions and views on science and technology in this area. By giving him the title of Assistant to the President for Science and Technology,21,22 the President could make it clear that the director of OSTP acts with his authority. This designation would allow the director, when interacting with the agencies, to have the stature and influence needed to ensure that programs in support of the science and technology elements of EOP’s priorities for homeland security are given the necessary attention.

Another factor that would help the OSTP director effectively support the communication of Presidential priorities is assuring that the OSTP has access to the people and resources needed to provide scientific, engineering, and technical expertise in the wide range of disciplines that are relevant to counterterrorism. The need for increased capabilities in the life sciences area is particularly apparent.

The Role of OMB in the S&T Strategy for Homeland Security

The budgeting process for counterterrorism investments is beginning to develop transparency and consistency through the process required by Congress and reported in OMB’s Annual Report to Congress on Combating Terrorism, typically prepared each August.23 However, the definition of “research” and

21  

“Assistant to the President” is a title that President George H.W. Bush gave to D. Allan Bromley, his science advisor, and that was continued for Bromley’s successors in that administration and for President Clinton’s science advisors as well.

22  

This recommendation was also made by the Hart-Rudman Commission (Hart-Rudman, at ix).

23  

OMB’s Annual Report to Congress on Combating Terrorism fulfills legislative requirements that the Administration provide information on executive branch funding for combating terrorism, domestic preparedness (primarily defense against weapons of mass destruction), and national security. The most recent version of the report was released in August 2001 and is available online at <http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/legislative/nsd_annual_report2001.pdf>.



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