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Waste Watch: Costly Coasters

(Dept. of Homeland Security)


Nashville, TN - Coasters for your drinks designed and given away in bars by the federal government.

The cost to taxpayers: $2.5 million.

They're part of the "See Something, Say Something" campaign.

The Department of Homeland Security is urging any suspicious activity to be reported.

But there's no number to call on these coasters and some question if bar patrons would even be able to read them in dim light.

The Maryland Transportation Administration paid for these with a $2.5 million dollar grant through a FEMA program, under the Department of Homeland Security.

The "See Something, Say Something" slogan is printed on the coasters without even a number to call to report suspicious activity.

The Transit Security Grant Program's website says it had $87 million dollars in 2015 to fund owners and operators of transit systems to protect infrastructure.

Some in Congress, and on the streets of Nashville, feel the coasters are a far-fetched project with this intent.

Though they're funded with federal money, these coasters have only been distributed in the Washington, DC area, including parts of Maryland and Virginia.

But coasters aren't the only thing this money bought.

A website domain for securetransit.org, encouraging the exact same message as a website that already exists by the Department of Homeland Security.

Fox 17 contacted DHS wanting to know how much of the funding actually went toward coasters and the website.

They haven't yet been able to answer our questions.

The Department of Homeland Security tells says they may soon have the information to answer our questions.

Looking at the program website, an additional $87 million has been allocated for spending in fiscal year 2016 as well.

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