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Mark W.
Democrat VA

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  • Tribute to Federal Employee Anthony Regalbuto

    by Senator Mark R. Warner

    Posted on 2015-02-04

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    WARNER. Mr. President, I come to the floor to continue a tradition that was begun by my esteemed former colleague, the former Senator from Delaware, Ted Kaufman. Senator Kaufman would come to this floor from time to time to celebrate members of the Federal workforce who exemplify excellence in public service. In that tradition I want to honor a great Federal employee: CAPT Anthony Regalbuto.

    Captain Regalbuto is a constituent of mine from Burke, VA. He currently serves as the Chief of the U.S. Coast Guard's Office of International and Domestic Port Security. But, in fact, Captain Regalbuto has spent his entire adult life in service to the Coast Guard, with 31 years on active duty and more than 12 years as a civilian--a total of 43 years of service. In this role he has been responsible for addressing the security weaknesses facing our Nation's ports. He has also assisted other countries with improving the safety of their own ports.

    More than 90 percent of the imported goods of the United States go through our ports. The security risks facing the ports are many, and workers such as Captain Regalbuto help ensure they remain safe and secure from threats. For our Nation's ports to remain safe, we must ensure our foreign shipping partners follow established international port security requirements. So part of Captain Regalbuto's job is to make sure foreign countries that want to conduct business using U.S. ports adhere to these requirements.

    Captain Regalbuto has developed a solution--a model code that countries could use as a guide to strengthen their own laws to improve the security of their ports. He also oversaw the creation of the Maritime Security Risk Analysis Model. It helps the Coast Guard analyze and address major port security weaknesses by measuring a variety of factors. This risk analysis model has helped the Coast Guard evaluate more than 30,000 potential targets and 100,000 attack scenarios across the country.

    Furthermore, this data has helped to efficiently allocate more than $2.7 billion in grants where they can best help improve port security and get the best bang for the taxpayer dollars.

    CAPT Anthony Regalbuto is just one of many Federal employees. He also happens to be a Federal employee who would potentially be affected by Department of Homeland Security funding, which is the current issue on the floor of the Senate.

    One of the challenges, even as we move past this particular debate, is to make sure in these tight budget times--going back to the comments of the Senator from Indiana--that we husband our resources. We are going to have to do more with less. One of the things that is terribly important--as someone who has spent more time in business than I have in politics--if you want your workforce to do more, you find ways both psychically, monetarily, and through appropriate review to reward them.

    Too often Members come to this floor and sometimes tend to demonize our Federal workforce. Too often over the past few years the Federal workforce is the first to receive the cuts in funding. If we are going to make sure our country remains strong, we want to make sure folks such as Captain Regalbuto keep our ports and keep our homeland safe. We need to recognize their service and, by all means, make sure we don't put in particular the DHS through another ill-fated, politically driven government shutdown.

    Mr. President, I yield the floor.

    The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Utah.

    (The remarks of Mr. Hatch pertaining to the introduction of S. J. Res. 6 are printed in today's Record under ``Statements on Introduced Bills and Joint Resolutions.'') Mr. HATCH. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.

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