Chertoff: DHS findings due within a month

Homeland Security Department Secretary Michael Chertoff told Congress that the 90-day review of DHS’ operations is complete and he will release the findings within a month.

In his first appearance before the House Government Reform Committee on June 9, Chertoff updated lawmakers on his second stage review to reorganize the department.

When Chertoff replaced Tom Ridge as DHS secretary in March, he initiated a stem-to-stern inspection of DHS operations and policies with the goal of reorganizing the department to address threats according to the likelihood and consequences of an attack.

The department finished the first part of the review -- data collection -- one day early, on May 30, Chertoff said. He said he will confer with the action teams, go over their recommendations and report back to Congress in a few weeks.

Lawmakers grilled Chertoff on DHS’ numerous setbacks and controversies. High on their list of complaints were border security, the new MaxHR human resources program and port-detection equipment that is unable to tell the difference between highly enriched uranium and the natural radiation emanating from kitty litter.

"There is a problem of confidence not only in the general public but in Congress," said Rep. Gil Gutknecht (R-Minn.). "Things are not as they're supposed to be."

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