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Cargo Scanning Delayed

GAO: System Costing $3.8B

Friday, September 26, 2008

It's taking more time and more money to roll out a new radiation detection system for cargo that enters ports here in New York and elsewhere. WNYC's Bob Hennelly has more on a report from Congress's Government Accountability Office.

REPORTER: The GAO says developers won't meet a November deadline for creating automated cargo scanning. The system is supposed to be deployed to air, land and sea ports of entry to detect a dirty bomb. The GAO also says the cost of the scanning system has almost doubled from $2 billion to $3.8 billion. Despite the extra money and time, GAO experts say the new technology won't improve upon existing equipment at the ports. A homeland security spokesperson says the agency will wait for the next round of testing to respond to the GAO's assessment. Sen. Joe Lieberman who chairs the homeland security committee says the Department of Homeland Security mishandled what he calls a critical program. For WNYC, I'm Bob Hennelly.

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