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In fiscal year 2004, the Department of Homeland Security spent $9 billion on goods and services it procured under contract. According to DHS spokesperson Valerie Smith, the Department intends to spend $11 billion in fiscal year 2005, an increase of 22%.

Such a rise in spending has likely been helped by DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff's view that "We [at the Department] don't have the expertise ..., even across the government, to get into very specific solutions for some of the challenges we face. [The private sector has] that expertise." This push for more public-private partnerships at DHS has helped give rise to significant private-sector profits, much of which came from a substantially increased demand for privately-sourced technology services.

President Bush has echoed this trend across the federal government. While some government spending has been cut, the President, according to The Washington Post earlier this month, "has proposed increasing total information technology spending from $60 billion this year to $65 billion next year."

For technology firms in the area, these changes naturally have led to an increased sense of contentment about government spending trends, one perhaps not felt in the months before and during last year's presidential election.

For more insight into DHS opportunities, please plan on joining the NVTC B2G Committee on the morning of September 14, 2005, at a special event with special guest speaker: The Honorable Asa Hutchinson, former Under Secretary for Border and Transportation Security (BTS) at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the current chair of the Venable law firm's Homeland Security Group.