View Rule

View EO 12866 Meetings Printer-Friendly Version     Download RIN Data in XML

DHS/TSA RIN: 1652-AA61 Publication ID: Fall 2013 
Title: Standardized Vetting, Adjudication, and Redress Services 
Abstract: The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) intends to propose new regulations to revise and standardize the procedures, adjudication criteria, and fees for most of the security threat assessments (STA) of individuals for which TSA is responsible. The scope of the rulemaking will include transportation workers from all modes of transportation who are required to undergo an STA, including surface maritime and aviation workers. In accordance with the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (9/11 Act), the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) will address STAs for frontline employees for public transportation agencies and railroads. In addition, TSA will propose fees to cover the cost of all STAs. TSA plans to improve efficiencies in processing STAs and streamline existing regulations by simplifying language and removing redundancies. As part of this proposed rule, TSA will propose revisions to the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP) regulations. TSA published an interim final rule for ASFP on September 20, 2004. TSA regulations require aliens seeking to train at Federal Aviation Administration-regulated flight schools to complete an application and undergo an STA prior to beginning flight training. There are four categories under which students currently fall; the nature of the STA depends on the student's category. TSA is considering changes to the AFSP that would improve the equity among fee payers and enable the implementation of new technologies to support vetting. 
Agency: Department of Homeland Security(DHS)  Priority: Economically Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: Yes  Unfunded Mandates: Undetermined 
CFR Citation: Not Yet Determined     (To search for a specific CFR, visit the Code of Federal Regulations.)
Legal Authority: 49 USC 114, 5103A, 44903 and 44936    46 USC 70105    6 USC 469    PL 110-53, secs 1411, 1414, 1520, 1522 and 1602   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need: Through this rulemaking, TSA proposes to carry out statutory mandates to perform security threat assessments (STA) of certain transportation workers pursuant to the 9/11 Act. Also, TSA proposes to fully satisfy 6 U.S.C. 469, which requires TSA to fund security threat assessment and credentialing activities through user fees. The proposed rulemaking would reduce reliance on appropriations for certain vetting services; minimize redundant background checks; and increase transportation security by enhancing identification and immigration verification standards.

Summary of the Legal Basis: 49 U.S.C. 114(f): Under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA), (Pub. L. 170-71, Nov. 19, 2001, 115 Stat. 597), TSA assumed responsibility to assess security in all modes of transportation and minimize threats to national and transportation security. TSA is required to vet certain aviation workers pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 44903 and 44936. TSA is required to vet individuals with unescorted access to maritime facilities pursuant to the Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA), (Pub. L. 107-295, sec. 102, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2064), codified at 46 U.S.C. 70105. Pursuant to the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act (USA PATRIOT Act) (Pub. L. 107-56, Oct. 25, 2001, 115 Stat. 272), TSA vets individuals seeking hazardous materials endorsements (HME) for commercial drivers licensed by the States. In the Implementing Recommendation of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-53, Aug. 3, 2007, 121 Stat. 266), Congress directed TSA to vet additional populations of transportation workers, including certain public transportation and railroad workers. In 6 U.S.C. 469, Congress directed TSA to fund vetting and credentialing programs in the field of transportation through user fees.

Alternatives: TSA considered a number of viable alternatives to lessen the impact of the proposed regulations on entities deemed "small" by the Small Business Administration (SBA) standards. This included: (1) extending phone pre-enrollment to populations eligible to enroll via the Web; and (2) changing the current delivery and activation process for applicants to receive credentials through the mail rather than returning to the enrollment center. These alternatives are discussed in detail in the proposed rule and regulatory evaluation.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits: TSA conducted a regulatory evaluation to estimate the costs regulated entities, individuals, and TSA would incur to comply with the requirements of the NPRM. The NPRM would impose new requirements for some individuals, codify existing requirements not included in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), and modify current STA requirements for many transportation workers. The primary benefits of the NPRM are that it would reduce reliance on appropriations to cover certain vetting services; improve security by requiring new and enhanced vetting; reduce the need for redundant background checks; and improve TSA's vetting product, process, and structure. TSA estimates that the NPRM would result in a cost savings to the alien flight student program. The estimated total savings for alien flight students, over a 5-year period is approximately $18 million at 7 percent discount rate.

Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  08/00/2014 
Additional Information: Includes Retrospective Review under E.O. 13563.
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes  Government Levels Affected: Undetermined 
Small Entities Affected: Businesses  Federalism: Undetermined 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
Public Comment URL:  
RIN Data Printed in the FR: Yes 
Related RINs: Related to 1652-AA35 
Agency Contact:
Hao-y Tran Froemling
Acting Director, Program Management Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Intelligence and Analysis, TSA-10, HQ, E6 , 601 South 12th Street,
Arlington, VA 20598-6010
Phone:571 227-2782

Monica Grasso Ph.D.
Manager, Economic Analysis Branch-Cross Modal Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Security Policy and Industry Engagement, 601 South 12th Street,
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone:571 227-3329

John Vergelli
Senior Counsel, Regulations and Security Standards
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Chief Counsel's Office, 601 South 12th Street,
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone:571 227-4416