homeland security

Emergency Preparedness
1:42 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

It’s National Preparedness Month: Here Are 4 Ways to Be Ready for Emergencies

A scene from the Bastrop fire response on Sept. 5, 2011. Wildfires are one of the most likely disaster scenarios for the Central Texas region.
KUT News

According to a survey from Austin’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, less than 10 percent of Austinites are ready for an emergency or natural disaster. 

“People just don’t think anything’s going to happen here,” explains spokesperson Candice Wade Cooper.  “Even though Austin may not be prone to sudden emergencies like earthquakes or tsunamis, there are all kinds of things that can catch you off guard – flooding, fires, burglary. It’s important to be prepared.”

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Politics
12:04 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Cornyn, McCaul Call for Standards for Measuring Border Security

Cornyn and McCaul want more information than the number of people caught illegally crossing the border.
flickr.com/xomiele

Texas lawmakers in Washington want the Department of Homeland Security to define what successful border security means.

Today, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Austin) filed legislation that would require the department to set metrics for achievement and solutions for reaching those standards.

Cornyn says it’s an important step to take in immigration reform.

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Texas
12:22 pm
Thu October 25, 2012

ICE Returns 4,000 Stolen Mexican Relics

Mexican relics are making their way back to their country of origin.
Charles Reed, Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System

The United States is returning to Mexico more than 4,000 architectural relics that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents have seized across the nation.

ICE says many of the items date from before European explorers reached the North American continent. The items include pre-Columbian stones used to grind corn and other grains, statues, figurines, copper hatchets and other artifacts.

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Austin
12:03 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

What if a Terrorist Attack Happened in Austin? City Officials Plan Response

Ronnie Taylor, with Texas Emergency Extension Service, engages city officials on their role during both natural and man-made disasters.
Kelly Connelly for KUT News

Here's one heck of a lunch topic: Responding to a terrorist attack in downtown Austin during South by Southwest.

That was one of the noontime subjects city officials considered yesterday, in a workshop discussing their role in case of catastrophe – such as terrorism, an infrastructure collapse or a natural disaster.

Attendees, including the members of the Austin City Council, considered a range of worst-case scenarios. One was that SXSW attack: “It is a beautiful morning in Austin – bustling, with SXSW in full swing,” a planning scenario posited. “Without warning a large explosion rocks downtown Austin … Confirmed fatalities – 83; Injuries – 200+ (some key officials and staff are known to be among them.)”

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Austin
10:42 am
Thu May 31, 2012

Slideshow: Emergency Preparedness Flash Mob Takes City Hall

Participants braved the afternoon heat to promote emergency preparedness yesterday.
Photo by Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Some 30 people gathered in front of City Hall yesterday, as part of a city-organized “flash mob” raising awareness of disaster preparedness.

The kid-aimed event began with a question-and-answer session for the little ones, complete with emergency pack prizes. Then it was time for the main event: a group dance to a hip-hop inflected preparedness song.  

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Austin
1:50 pm
Wed May 30, 2012

What a Feeling: 'Flash' Dance Your Way to Emergency Preparedness

Security theater with a beat: A still from a video promoting today's dance flash mob.
Image courtesy youtube.com/user/austintexasgov

Catastrophic floods. Bio-terrorism. Nuclear attacks.

Can a flash mob and a funky beat help people prepare for such emergencies?

The City of Austin’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management office thinks it might be weird enough to work. Today, HSEM is gathering a flash mob outside of City Hall to spread its message of preparedness. The city partnered with Dance Austin Studio to design a dance accompanying a song with instructions for making a plan. (Yes, such a thing exists.)

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Texas
11:44 am
Tue June 7, 2011

DPS Fires Top Official After Criminal Investigation Into Homeland Security Grants

The Texas Department of Public Safety has started a process to fire a top official who used to be in charge of administering Homeland Security Grants in the state. DPS said in a statement that the move follows a five-month investigation of Janice Bruno and alleged criminal misconduct involving a grant issued to the North Central Texas Council of Governments.

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