Text: H.R.710 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 114-278 (12/16/2016)

 
[114th Congress Public Law 278]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



[[Page 1409]]

                      TRANSPORTATION SECURITY CARD 
                           PROGRAM ASSESSMENT

[[Page 130 STAT. 1410]]

Public Law 114-278
114th Congress

                                 An Act


 
To require the Secretary of Homeland Security to prepare a comprehensive 
security assessment of the transportation security card program, and for 
         other purposes. <<NOTE: Dec. 16, 2016 -  [H.R. 710]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. <<NOTE: Deadlines. 46 USC 70105 note.>>  TRANSPORTATION 
                              WORKER IDENTIFICATION CREDENTIAL 
                              SECURITY CARD PROGRAM IMPROVEMENTS 
                              AND ASSESSMENT.

    (a) Credential Improvements.--
            (1) In general.--Not later than 60 days after the date of 
        enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Transportation 
        Security Administration shall commence actions, consistent with 
        section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, to improve the 
        Transportation Security Administration's process for vetting 
        individuals with access to secure areas of vessels and maritime 
        facilities.
            (2) Required actions.--The actions described under paragraph 
        (1) shall include--
                    (A) <<NOTE: Analysis.>>  conducting a comprehensive 
                risk analysis of security threat assessment procedures, 
                including--
                          (i) identifying those procedures that need 
                      additional internal controls; and
                          (ii) identifying best practices for quality 
                      assurance at every stage of the security threat 
                      assessment;
                    (B) implementing the additional internal controls 
                and best practices identified under subparagraph (A);
                    (C) improving fraud detection techniques, such as--
                          (i) by establishing benchmarks and a process 
                      for electronic document validation;
                          (ii) by requiring annual training for Trusted 
                      Agents; and
                          (iii) <<NOTE: Review.>>  by reviewing any 
                      security threat assessment-related information 
                      provided by Trusted Agents and incorporating any 
                      new threat information into updated guidance under 
                      subparagraph (D);
                    (D) <<NOTE: Update.>>  updating the guidance 
                provided to Trusted Agents regarding the vetting process 
                and related regulations;
                    (E) finalizing a manual for Trusted Agents and 
                adjudicators on the vetting process; and
                    (F) establishing quality controls to ensure 
                consistent procedures to review adjudication decisions 
                and terrorism vetting decisions.
            (3) Report.--Not later than 2 years after the date of 
        enactment of this Act, the Inspector General of the Department

[[Page 130 STAT. 1411]]

        of Homeland Security shall submit a report to Congress that 
        evaluates the implementation of the actions described in 
        paragraph (1).

    (b) Comprehensive Security Assessment of the Transportation Security 
Card Program.--
            (1) In general.--Not later than 60 days after the date of 
        enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall 
        commission an assessment of the effectiveness of the 
        transportation security card program (referred to in this 
        section as ``Program'') required under section 70105 of title 
        46, United States Code, at enhancing security and reducing 
        security risks for facilities and vessels regulated under 
        chapter 701 of that title.
            (2) Location.--The assessment commissioned under paragraph 
        (1) shall be conducted by a research organization with 
        significant experience in port or maritime security, such as--
                    (A) a national laboratory;
                    (B) a university-based center within the Science and 
                Technology Directorate's centers of excellence network; 
                or
                    (C) a qualified federally-funded research and 
                development center.
            (3) <<NOTE: Reviews.>>  Contents.--The assessment 
        commissioned under paragraph (1) shall--
                    (A) review the credentialing process by 
                determining--
                          (i) the appropriateness of vetting standards;
                          (ii) whether the fee structure adequately 
                      reflects the current costs of vetting;
                          (iii) whether there is unnecessary redundancy 
                      or duplication with other Federal- or State-issued 
                      transportation security credentials; and
                          (iv) the appropriateness of having varied 
                      Federal and State threat assessments and access 
                      controls;
                    (B) review the process for renewing applications for 
                Transportation Worker Identification Credentials, 
                including the number of days it takes to review 
                application, appeal, and waiver requests for additional 
                information; and
                    (C) <<NOTE: Evaluation.>>  review the security value 
                of the Program by--
                          (i) evaluating the extent to which the 
                      Program, as implemented, addresses known or likely 
                      security risks in the maritime and port 
                      environments;
                          (ii) evaluating the potential for a non-
                      biometric credential alternative;
                          (iii) identifying the technology, business 
                      process, and operational impacts of the use of the 
                      transportation security card and transportation 
                      security card readers in the maritime and port 
                      environments;
                          (iv) assessing the costs and benefits of the 
                      Program, as implemented; and
                          (v) evaluating the extent to which the 
                      Secretary of Homeland Security has addressed the 
                      deficiencies in the Program identified by the 
                      Government Accountability Office and the Inspector 
                      General of the Department of Homeland Security 
                      before the date of enactment of this Act.

[[Page 130 STAT. 1412]]

            (4) Deadlines.--The assessment commissioned under paragraph 
        (1) shall be completed not later than 1 year after the date on 
        which the assessment is commissioned.
            (5) <<NOTE: Deadline.>>  Submission to congress.--Not later 
        than 60 days after the date that the assessment is completed, 
        the Secretary of Homeland Security shall submit to the Committee 
        on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the Committee on 
        Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and the 
        Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on 
        Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of 
        Representatives the results of the assessment commissioned under 
        this subsection.

    (c) <<NOTE: Deadline.>>  Corrective Action Plan; Program Reforms.--
If the assessment commissioned under subsection (b) identifies a 
deficiency in the effectiveness of the Program, the Secretary of 
Homeland Security, not later than 60 days after the date on which the 
assessment is completed, shall submit a corrective action plan to the 
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the Committee on 
Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate, the Committee 
on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure of the House of Representatives that--
            (1) responds to findings of the assessment;
            (2) includes an implementation plan with benchmarks;
            (3) may include programmatic reforms, revisions to 
        regulations, or proposals for legislation; and
            (4) shall be considered in any rulemaking by the Department 
        of Homeland Security relating to the Program.

    (d) <<NOTE: Deadlines.>>  Inspector General Review.--If a corrective 
action plan is submitted under subsection (c), the Inspector General of 
the Department of Homeland Security shall--
            (1) not later than 120 days after the date of such 
        submission, review the extent to which such plan implements the 
        requirements under subsection (c); and
            (2) <<NOTE: Time period. Reports.>>  not later than 18 
        months after the date of such submission, and annually 
        thereafter for 3 years, submit a report to the congressional 
        committees set forth in subsection (c) that describes the 
        progress of the implementation of such plan.

    Approved December 16, 2016.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 710:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

HOUSE REPORTS: No. 114-244 (Comm. on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD:
                                                        Vol. 161 (2015):
                                    Feb. 10, considered and passed 
                                        House.
                                                        Vol. 162 (2016):
                                    Dec. 9, considered and passed 
                                        Senate, amended.
                                    Dec. 13, House concurred in Senate 
                                        amendment.

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