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Chertoff Defends Homeland Cuts to New York City

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff defends his department's decision to cut Homeland Security grants to New York City and for the Washington, D.C., area by 40 percent compared to last year, saying New York still receives the most money of any city for security.

News of the grant amounts, announced this week, prompted sharp criticism from Congress. And one New York representative wrote that the Homeland Security Department "has declared war on New York City."

But Chertoff says it's not fair to compare grants for this year against grants for the previous year. The secretary cites the funding averages for the past three years, saying that the new allocations for New York are directly in line with previous years.

NPR's Melissa Block talks with Chertoff.

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