Illinois disaster preparedness affected by Department of Homeland Security

Feb 27, 2015

Local officials say if congress doesn’t reach an agreement to fund the Department of Homeland Security it could hurt the area’s disaster preparedness.  Michael Masters heads Cook County’s Department of Homeland Security.

"We don’t think that politics should play a role in public safety. The threats are real, the dollars we receive our real. And the impact of losing those dollars over time would be real."

The Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, James Joseph, says the state wouldn’t really be at risk of losing federal money unless the shutdown lasts until September. But Joseph says if Illinois were to suffer a disaster during the shutdown they wouldn’t be able to get a federal disaster declaration.

"There could be some limitations as to the amount of immediate support that we’re used to receiving."

Joseph says there would still be essential staff available to help with life saving support.