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36 New York's mayor--and its transit system--have been receive considerable financial support for equipment and less successful in plans to increase video surveillance in for employee training and terrorist awareness programs NYCT's subway system. Although its size and the age of the from the federal government. system combine to make NYCT unrepresentative of tran- sit agencies, its experiences are instructive of problems that As indicated by the responding transit agencies, cur- can occur, albeit on a smaller scale, for all transit systems. rently the major funding source for surveillance systems is In April 2009, the MTA, which oversees the NYCT, was the DHS Transit Security Grant Program, followed by fund- sued by its video surveillance contractor, Lockheed Martin. ing from the FTA. APTA has also increased its presence in The company alleged that the agency's interference relating transit security, and both it and the FTA have published a to its $300 million contract to install a network of digital number of studies of best practices that were the basis for cameras had prevented it from completing work begun in many of the directives issued by the TSA in 2004 to public late 2005. Two months later the MTA countersued, claiming transit agencies (Jenkins and Butterworth 2007). DHS/TSA Lockheed Martin had "bungled" the antiterrorism program has awarded grants for planning, training, equipment, and that was intended to link 2,000 subway cameras into an other security enhancements, in addition to providing other intelligent video surveillance command center. At the time, services to transit agencies. Some grant programs have been the MTA stated that only about 1,400 of the 1,750 cameras used to undertake risk assessments and bolster emergency were installed and that few were working. The basis of its response capabilities. The largest percentage of the avail- countersuit was that the system had failed repeatedly during able funds, though, is used for employee training and for the tests and that Lockheed Martin had falsely claimed the work purchase of surveillance equipment. was progressing even though about $250 million had been spent (Namako 2009). Prior to the creation of DHS in the wake of the 9/11 terror- ist attacks, FTA was the most common source of funds for Regardless of the claims and counterclaims, some of the purchasing equipment; Maier and Malone (2001) reported cameras' inability to capture video was attributed to the tran- that 14 of their responding agencies, which included both sit environment, where heat, water, and electrical problems bus and rail systems, received funds from the FTA grant slowed the job's progress. These are all factors that may limit program, 9 relied on state grants, 6 on local funds, 6 on inter- attempts to retrofit a century-old transit system to accept mod- nal funding sources, and 1 on an unspecified source. They ern technology (Rivera and Grynbaum 2010). The lawsuit is noted, though, that about one-third of the agencies used a pending; because of this, MTA and its constituent agencies combination of sources to fund their purchases (2001, pp. declined to reply to this synthesis's questionnaire. 2324). The FTA helps transit agencies fund security proj- ects by providing financial assistance and by requiring that Many factors may influence the decision to install a sur- agencies spend 1% of their urbanized area grant program veillance network in all or part of the transit system. In the funds on security improvements. These funds are available case of Tri-Met, the route played a role because concern to jurisdictions with populations of 50,000 or more for use centered on its 5.5-mile Airport MAX line, which travels for capital investments, operating expenses, and transporta- from downtown Portland to Portland International Airport. tion-related planning. Since it began revenue service in September 2001, video sur- veillance has been employed along the line, but because the The existence of DHS funding has had a direct influence Airport MAX terminus was in close proximity to the air ter- on rail transit expenditures for security. For this study, agen- minal, the FAA requested that no train be unattended at the cies were asked to indicate the percentage of their funding airport. In addition to adding security patrols to the airport that came from a number of sources, including the FTA station during all operating hours and checking all trains for grant program, DHS, state grants, municipal grants, agency unattended items, Tri-Met installed surveillance cameras at funding, funding or grants from surveillance equipment the airport station. This also illustrates the expanded role of vendors, or any other sources. Agencies were not asked to the federal government in local decisions since 9/11. Using provide dollar amounts; they were asked only to indicate the grant funds, Tri-Met also installed cameras on all 78 MAX percentages of funds from each source. trains, at stations with elevators, and at a number of parking garages (Eder 2005, p. 1927). Table 9 indicates the number of agencies that listed receiving more than 50% of their funds for surveillance expenditures from any one of the choices provided and those FUNDING VIDEO SURVEILLANCE SYSTEMS that indicated that 100% of their funds came from any one source. Agencies that did not receive at least 50% of their Because transit agencies are local entities, each needs to funds from a sole source but from a variety of the sources purchase surveillance equipment independently of other are not included. One light rail system than anticipates rev- transit agencies. In the aftermath of terrorist attacks on enue service beginning in 2011 received an equal percentage transit systems worldwide, U.S. transit systems began to of funding from FTA and DHS (50% received from each).
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37 Valley Metro in Phoenix, a case study agency, was the only The responses overwhelming reinforce the importance agency whose surveillance network was funded solely with of external funding for purchasing and upgrading surveil- agency money. As a new transit system, it was not eligible lance systems. Although transit systems must in effect com- for DHS grants but will be able to compete for such funds pete against one another for the DHS funds, the amounts now that it is fully operational. of money available are larger than from any other single source. For instance, in May 2010 the DHS announced that it would release almost $790 million in Preparedness Grants TABLE 9 for nine federal programs. The Transit Security Grant Pro- SOURCE OF 50%/ALL VIDEO SURVEILLANCE FUNDING gram was to receive $253.4 million, plus an additional $150 Source of Funds for 50% or More All Funds million provided through the first and second American Video Surveillance Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding provisions. Also System included in the total of $790 million was $20 million to FTA Grant Program 11 2 Amtrak; $14.5 million to the Freight Rail Security Grant DHS 10 4 Program for critical freight infrastructure projects centered State Grants 1 1 on transportation of hazardous materials; and $11.5 for the Intercity Bus Security Grant Program, which is available to Municipal Grants 0 0 fixed-route intercity and charter bus companies for security Agency Funding 1 0 planning, facility upgrades, and vehicle and driver protec- Vendor Funding/Grant 0 0 tion. Other funds are allocated to other areas of transporta- Other 0 0 tion infrastructure, including ports and terminals (Kronfeld 2010). Despite these large amounts of available money, politicians and the DHS's own Office of the Inspector Gen- Because agencies were promised anonymity, analysis of eral have consistently urged DHS to expand its effective- the table is general. The two agencies that received 100% ness in the area of mass transit and passenger rail. A recent of their funds from FTA are recently opened systems. The report, though, focused primarily on nonmonetary aid agencies that received 100% of their funds from DHS include (Chunovic 2010). Amtrak (which is federally funded overall), two commuter, and one light rail agency. The agencies that received 50% or Reinforcing the close ties between terrorism prevention more of their funding from either FTA or DHS do not fall and detection and risk management, DHS disburses funds into easy categorization with the possible exception that a far only to agencies that have relied on its mandated method- larger number of FTA-funded agencies are newer systems in ology to complete a risk assessment. This requirement has areas of the country that are less likely to be seen as major resulted in a number of agencies that previously had not terrorist targets, although there were exceptions to either of completed risk assessments undertaking them to be eligible these descriptions. With few exceptions, the agencies that to apply for funds. Basic eligibility to compete for funds is received at least 50% of their funds from DHS were estab- based on the Urban Areas Security Initiative list and the lished transit agencies in urbanized areas. National Transit Database; eligible applicants are listed as part of the annual guidance published to assist agencies in The three agencies that received more than 50% of their completing the requests. DHS has further divided agencies funding from sources other than FTA or DHS are equally into two tiers. Tier I is composed of transit agencies in the difficult to categorize. The agency that received all its fund- eight highest-risk urban areas as determined by DHS; Tier ing from state grants is a new commuter rail system and the II consists of all other eligible transit agencies. Agencies are one that received 50% of its funding from state grants is effectively competing against one another. Applications are an established light rail system located in a different state. evaluated by panels composed of federal employees who Finally, the agency that funded more than 50% of its sur- score the projects based on a number of criteria, including veillance-related costs from its own funds is a large, long- the agency's risk group score, the project's effectiveness established eastern seaboard agency. group score, the project's potential for risk mitigation (which includes cost-effectiveness, feasibility, timeliness, and sus- Results received in answer to this question underline that tainability), regional collaboration if required, and the agen- the sources of funding for surveillance are limited even if cy's offering of a cost share. Projects are ranked and funded the dollar amounts are considerable. Only a few agencies in order until the funds are exhausted. All information and reported receiving funds or grants from vendors, and these forms are available on the DHS website, as is information on generally cover 10% or less of their costs. Although com- Tier I-eligible agencies, the allocations for each Tier I area, muter rail agencies are regulated by FRA and would be eli- and designation of Tier II areas and eligible agencies. gible for FRA financial support for surveillance initiatives including under the FHWA's Highway-Rail Crossing Pro- Some agencies are in more competitive areas than oth- gram, none indicated this as a source of funds. ers. MBTA and MARTA, for instance, are the only Tier I