Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack met with the National Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge Tuesday as part of the National Governors’ Association Executive Committee. Vilsack, a democrat, says Ridge told the governors the federal government will provide more money to strengthen the public health system.He says the money will create greater capacity in local hospitals and provide better communication between state and federal officials in how to treat terrorist threats. Vilsack says the money this year is part of a long-term plan that appears to be a multi-year commitment of block grant funds to the system.Federal officials issued a heightened security alert last week. Vilsack says Director Ridge did not mention any specific threat, other than the convergence of several religious holidays. Vilsack says Ridge did make it clear that terrorism has become an ongoing concern.Vilsack and other governors on the committee met with Ridge, the Secretary of Health, and the administrator of the E-P-A in Washington, D.C.
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