DHS shake-up plan due Wednesday

Secretary Michael Chertoff is scheduled to announce plans for changing the Homeland Security Department's policies and organization in a July 13 speech, the department said.

Chertoff's speech in Washington will be followed the next day by a House Homeland Security Committee hearing, at which Chertoff is the only scheduled witness. The committee issued an announcement saying it would examine the results of Chertoff's internal review of the department.

While plans for the expected DHS reorganization have been closely held, Chertoff already has indicated that they have received high-level attention in the administration. In earlier testimony, he said the department likely would move to mandatory standards for upgrading security at chemical plants, a decision that would require Office of Management and Budget assent.

Chertoff said in the weeks after he received his appointment that he favored a policy of realigning DHS' organizations and priorities in line with the threats and tasks facing the department rather than existing administrative boundaries, a change that likely will have broad IT effects.

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