Congress Allocates $120 Million for Trump Family’s Security Costs


The Secret Service has been particularly strained as it tries to keep up with its new protectees, who include a first lady who is living in Trump Tower and Mr. Trump’s frequently traveling adult children. The agency had requested additional funds earlier this year.


The New York City police commissioner said the department had spent $300,000 a day protecting Trump Tower between Election Day and Inauguration Day. Credit Karsten Moran for The New York Times

The legislation provides the Secret Service $34 million for increased physical protection costs associated with Mr. Trump for the remainder of the fiscal year. The money could be used flexibly to protect the first family in New York and when it travels. The allocation is on top of several hundred million dollars already set aside for protection.

Another $23 million would specifically go toward covering the costs of outfitting Trump Tower with the necessary equipment and personnel, as well as to rent space inside the building for agency personnel, according to a Homeland Security official who was familiar with the funding bill but not yet authorized to discuss it.

Aside from the Secret Service, the biggest beneficiaries under the agreement would be New York City and Palm Beach County, where Mr. Trump and his family have spent the bulk of their time away from Washington since Election Day. Bedminster, N.J., where Mr. Trump owns another golf club and is expected to spend time in the coming weeks and months, would also be eligible to apply for the funds.

Congress had previously approved $7 million to reimburse the local law enforcement costs of protecting Mr. Trump between Election Day and the inauguration. The new agreement will provide that money, plus $20 million for the same period and $41 million for the period from January 20 until the end of the fiscal year.

“Although the federal government does not otherwise reimburse costs of state or local law enforcement for activities in support of the United States Secret Service protection mission,” the legislation reads, “these funds are being provided in recognition of the extraordinary costs borne by a small number of jurisdictions in which a residence of the president is located.”

New York City has borne the heaviest cost since Mr. Trump was elected. Joseph P. O’Neill, the police commissioner, wrote in a letter in February to the state’s congressional delegation that the police department had spent $300,000 a day protecting Trump Tower between Election Day and Inauguration Day and between $127,000 to $145,000 a day since then, on top of other costs.

In Florida, home to Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Department has said it spends an additional $60,000 a day in overtime when Mr. Trump is in town. He has visited seven times since Inauguration Day, spending a total of 25 days there.

The federal reimbursement, which was championed by lawmakers representing the localities, was greeted as a relief, even as there were concerns that it may prove insufficient.

“We are getting what we are owed,” Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York said in a statement thanking New York’s congressional delegation for helping secure the funds. “That’s good news for our city and the hardworking police officers faced with this unprecedented security challenge.”

The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Department declined to comment on Monday, but Representative Ted Deutch, Democrat of Florida, who represents parts of Palm Beach County, said he was grateful the county’s taxpayers would not be on the hook. Still, he said, the agreement provided only a temporary solution.

“This is an important step,” Mr. Deutch said. “But now and by the end of the funding bill, we have to have a discussion about whether it is appropriate for the president to bill the taxpayers for trips to his private club.”

Continue reading the main storySource: New York Times – Politics



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