USA Today reported Tuesday that the $5 billion in unspent Homeland Security funds has some officials wondering whether the government is granting money faster than local governments can spend it.
The $5 billion represents what hasn't been spent in $16 billion in grants approved by the U.S. Congress for states and the District of Columbia, from fiscal 2002 to fiscal 2007.
"Why put billions more dollars in the hopper when it's full already?" U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Ky., of the House Appropriations Homeland Security Subcommittee said, USA Today reported.
State officials told the newspaper the unspent funds can be explained. Some of it is due to equipment backorders. Some of the money will be spent on long-term projects. Some projects have been slowed by competitive bidding, officials told USA Today.