|Blunt amendment would preserve private non-TSA airport screeners|
|By: Press Office of U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt|
|Posted: Thursday, February 3, 2011 6:06 pm|
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 3, 2011) — U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt offered an amendment on the U.S. Senate floor today that would require the federal government to approve the use of private security screeners within 30 days of a request and preserve airports’ ability to choose the screening that they determine to be the best fit for the need of their airport and passengers.
The amendment, which was introduced under the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Bill, ends the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) new arbitrary cap on the private screening program and allows the program to continue to operate as it has for the last decade. Currently, the TSA has arbitrarily placed a self-imposed cap of 16 on the number of airports nationwide that can employ private screeners. Blunt helped negotiate and author the original legislation creating TSA in 2001 in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“Congress clearly intended that this opt-out would be open to all airports,” said Blunt. “I have a great deal of respect and appreciation for the hardworking TSA screeners at the Springfield airport, but the law doesn’t say that the TSA Administrator gets to stop the program whenever he decides he wants to.”
On Wednesday, Jan. 26, KOLR/KSFX reported (click here for details), “The airport wants to opt out of TSA security and go to a private company… All of the federal guidelines will stay the same. You will still have to remove your shoes, get screened, and even patted down. TSA would oversee the private company financially, so it wouldn’t cost the airport any money.”
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