Romney, Portman, King, Hassan, Applaud House Passage of More Than $20 Million for the Office of National Cyber Director in Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act

WASHINGTON–today, U.S. Senators Mitt Romney (R-UT), Rob Portman (R-OH), Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Angus King (I-ME), Co-Chair of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, and Maggie Hassan (D-NH), applauded the House passage of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act that includes their bipartisan priority to provide $21 million in funding for the Office of the National Cyber Director (NCD). The NCD is a brand new position tasked with coordinating the implementation of national cybersecurity policy and strategy. Because the position was created in the middle of a fiscal year, Congress has not yet directly appropriated funding for the Office. With cyberattacks increasing in both scope and consequence, it is crucial to provide the National Cyber Director with the funding and resources necessary to accomplish this important mission. The inclusion of this bipartisan priority in the broader, bipartisan infrastructure package will provide a one-time funding allocation of $21 million through Fiscal Year 2022. The Senate passed the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act in August and it will now head to the president’s desk to be signed into law.

“The size, scope, and frequency of cyber attacks has made it abundantly clear that the United States’ cyber warfare readiness is extraordinarily weak,” said Senator Romney. “This important funding will support the Office of the National Cyber Director in developing and implementing a national cybersecurity policy and strategy, which will better protect our country from growing cyber threats.”

“I applaud the House for passing our bipartisan priority of $21 million in important funding for the new Office of the National Cyber Director as part of the bipartisan infrastructure package and I urge the president to sign it into law quickly,” said Senator Portman. “This funding is critical because the position was created in the middle of a fiscal year and thus Congress has not yet directly appropriated funding for the Office of the National Cyber Director which is tasked with coordinating the implementation of national cyber policy and strategy. As we face increasing cyber threats, it is crucial that the National Cyber Director has the funding needed in order to able to effectively and efficiently develop national cyber policies that best protect federal networks, data, and critical infrastructure.”

“As we work hard to negotiate investments in our infrastructure priorities, it’s essential to support and strengthen the security of our digital networks  -- which connect our economy and culture just as much as our highways, railways and bridges,” said Senator King, Co-Chair of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission that created the position of National Cyber Director. “As we strengthen our networks against global cyberthreats and ransomware criminals, we must ensure that Director Inglis has the resources to implement a comprehensive plan to protect our society, economy, and nation from those seeking to do us harm.”

“Strengthening cybersecurity is a fundamental part of protecting our infrastructure, from energy grids to health care systems,” said Senator Hassan. “I am pleased that we worked on a bipartisan basis to immediately provide funding for the Office of the National Cyber Director in the infrastructure package. This will help us better protect our economy and national security alike from cybersecurity threats.”