IG: DHS Agency for Oversight of Fertilizer Plant Security in Disarray

"The Homeland Security Department program charged with the security of chemical facilities like the former West Fertilizer Co. plant has been riddled with problems so severe since its creation five years ago that federal investigators recently wondered publicly 'whether it can achieve its mission, given the challenges the program continues to face.'"

"A devastating Homeland Security inspector general report released in March lays bare an alarming pattern of poor planning and ineffective execution that beset nearly every aspect of the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards program, as well as the subsequent misleading of congressional overseers, who were told the program was making progress.

A patchwork of state and federal agencies regulated the West fertilizer plant, but nearly all focused not on plant safety, but on pollution concerns or securing the facility and its potentially dangerous fertilizers from criminal or terrorist threat."

Jeremy Schwartz reports for the Austin American-Statesman April 24, 2013.

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Source: Austin American-Statesman, 04/25/2013