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DHS/USCG RIN: 1625-AB21 Publication ID: Fall 2014 
Title: Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC); Card Reader Requirements 

The Coast Guard is establishing electronic card reader requirements for maritime facilities and vessels to be used in combination with TSA's Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC). Congress enacted several statutory requirements within the Security and Accountability for Every (SAFE) Port Act of 2006 to guide regulations pertaining to TWIC readers, including the need to evaluate TSA's final pilot program report as part of the TWIC reader rulemaking. During the rulemaking process, we will take into account the final pilot data and the various conditions in which TWIC readers may be employed. For example, we will consider the types of vessels and facilities that will use TWIC readers, locations of secure and restricted areas, operational constraints, and need for accessibility. Recordkeeping requirements, amendments to security plans, and the requirement for data exchanges (i.e., Canceled Card List) between TSA and vessel or facility owners/operators will also be addressed in this rulemaking.

Agency: Department of Homeland Security(DHS)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 33 CFR, subchapter H     (To search for a specific CFR, visit the Code of Federal Regulations.)
Legal Authority: 33 USC 1226    33 USC 1231    46 USC 701    50 USC 191    50 USC 192    EO 12656   
Legal Deadline:
Action Source Description Date
Final  Statutory  SAFE Port Act, codified at 46 U.S.C. 70105(k). The final rule is required 2 years after the commencement of the pilot program.  08/20/2010 

Overall Description of Deadline: The final rule is required 2 years after the commencement of the pilot program.

Statement of Need:

The Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) of 2002 explicitly required the issuance of a biometric transportation security card to all U.S. merchant mariners and to workers requiring unescorted access to secure areas of MTSA-regulated facilities and vessels. On May 22, 2006, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the Coast Guard published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to carry out this statute, proposing a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) Program where TSA conducts security threat assessments and issues identification credentials, while the Coast Guard requires integration of the TWIC into the access control systems of vessels, facilities, and Outer Continental Shelf facilities. Based on comments received during the public comment period, TSA and the Coast Guard split the TWIC rule. The final TWIC rule, published in January of 2007, addressed the issuance of the TWIC and use of the TWIC as a visual identification credential at access control points. In an ANPRM, published in March of 2009, and a NPRM, published in April of 2013, the Coast Guard proposed a risk-based approach to TWIC reader requirements and included proposals to classify MTSA-regulated vessels and facilities into one of three risk groups, based on specific factors related to TSI consequence, and apply TWIC reader requirements for vessels and facilities in conjunction with their relative risk-group placement. This rulemaking is necessary to comply with the SAFE Port Act and to complete the implementation of the TWIC Program in our ports. By requiring electronic card readers at vessels and facilities, the Coast Guard will further enhance port security and improve access control measures.

Summary of the Legal Basis:

The statutory authorities for the Coast Guard to prescribe, change, revise, or amend these regulations are provided under 33 U.S.C. 1226, 1231; 46 U.S.C. chapter 701; 50 U.S.C. 191, 192; Executive Order 12656, 3 CFR 1988 Comp., p. 585; 33 CFR 1.05-1, 6.04-11, 6.14, 6.16, and 6.19; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.


The implementation of TWIC reader requirements is mandated by the SAFE Port Act. We considered several alternatives in the formulation of this proposal. These alternatives were based on risk analysis of different combinations of facility and vessel populations facing TWIC reader requirements. The preferred alternative selected allowed the Coast Guard to target the highest risk entities while minimizing the overall burden.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits:

The main cost drivers of this rule are the acquisition and installation of TWIC readers and the maintenance of the affected entity's TWIC reader system. Initial costs, which we would distribute over a phased-in implementation period, consist predominantly of the costs to purchase, install, and integrate approved TWIC readers into their current physical access control system. Recurring annual costs will be driven by costs associated with canceled card list updates, opportunity costs associated with delays and replacement of TWICs that cannot be read, and maintenance of the affected entity's TWIC reader system. As reported in the NPRM Regulatory Analysis, the total 10-year total industry and government cost for the TWIC is $234.3 million undiscounted and $186.1 discounted at 7 percent. We estimate the annualized cost of this rule to industry to be $26.5 million at a 7 percent discount rate. The benefits of the rulemaking include the enhancement of the security of vessel ports and other facilities by ensuring that only individuals who hold valid TWICs are granted unescorted access to secure areas at those locations.


USCG used risk-based decision-making to develop this rulemaking. Based on this analysis, the Coast Guard has proposed requiring higher-risk vessels and facilities to meet the requirements for electronic TWIC inspection, while continuing to allow lower-risk vessels and facilities to use TWIC as a visual identification credential.

Action Date FR Cite
ANPRM  03/27/2009  74 FR 13360   
Notice of Public Meeting  04/15/2009  74 FR 17444   
ANPRM Comment Period End  05/26/2009    
Notice of Public Meeting Comment Period End  05/26/2009    
NPRM  03/22/2013  78 FR 20558   
NPRM Comment Period Extended  05/10/2013  78 FR 27335   
NPRM Comment Period Extended End  06/20/2013 
Final Rule  04/00/2015 
Additional Information: Docket ID USCG-2007-28915.
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Information URL:   Public Comment URL:  
RIN Data Printed in the FR: Yes 
Related RINs: Related to 1625-AB02  Related Agencies: Common: DHS/TSA; 
Agency Contact:
LT Mason Wilcox
Project Manager
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
Commandant (CG-FAC-2), 2703 Martin Luther King Jr., Avenue, SE., STOP 7501,
Washington, DC 20593-7501
Phone:202 372-1123