Pacific region gets
attention in terror bill

A Senate committee has unanimously approved a bill that sets up a study to look at the feasibility of establishing a Pacific region in the Department of Homeland Security.

The region would oversee Alaska, Hawaii and U.S. territories in the Pacific, said Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii.

Under the bill approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee, the Department of Homeland Security would have to submit findings by Feb. 1.

"The department's report would examine the unique challenges that noncontiguous states face, including the difficulty in providing service because of the unique geography and location of Hawaii and Alaska," Inouye said.

He said the United States must focus more on securing Hawaii's air and sea links.

The bill, approved Thursday, also includes $1.6 million for a small-arms range in Honolulu for the Coast Guard. The measure now moves to the full Senate for consideration.


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