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Charlotte Amalie
Friday, February 3, 2023
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Delegate Discusses Drugs and Security in the Region

March 30, 2005 – Delegate Donna M. Christensen said Tuesday was a day when she let some of the people she represents know what she was up against in Washington, D. C.
Christensen, in her capacity as the territorial delegate on the House Committee on Homeland Security, convened a roundtable in Puerto Rico to assess Homeland Security issues in light of budget cuts
Attending from the Virgin Islands were: Gov. Charles Turnbull, Elton Lewis, commissioner of the police department and Eddy Charles, adjutant general of the V.I. National Guard.
She said Wednesday that budget cuts could have a drastic effect on what federal money is received by fire and police forces in less populated areas like the Virgin Islands.
She also said that federal Homeland Security officials were feeling the pressure to focus more money in the more populated areas where more calamitous events could take place. The federal philosophy has dovetailed into the idea "that we can't make everyone safe."
She said she still had strong arguments for why Homeland Security funds were needed in the Virgin Islands. The three U.S. Virgin Islands are a point of entry to the United States and "We have a refinery that is very important to everyone."
In a press release concerning what was discussed, she wrote, "We have a difficult landscape in which to maneuver," pointing out that the new Homeland Security Secretary has said "we cannot look into every box." Christensen emphasized that the territories like Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have to work hard to ensure that they don't find themselves "off the radar screen."
While in Puerto Rico Tuesday, she also attended a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area meeting at the invitation of the Anibal Acevedo Vila, governor of Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands share the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area designation which is aimed at concentrating federal and local law enforcement resources to address trafficking, immigrant smuggling and other border control issues common to America in the Caribbean.
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