Bipartisan legislation (HR-1813) has been reintroduced in the House to require that the TSA retain all funds collected under the September 11 Security Fee for use for investing in the workforce and needed technology.
Sponsors say that a third of that fund has been diverted each year since 2013, resulting in the loss to the TSA of some $1.4 billion in 2019. The bill further would allow the TSA to draw on the fund in the event of a funding lapse to guarantee that screeners and other TSA employees continue to be paid.
The House Homeland Security Committee meanwhile has approved:
* HR-1877, to order the TSA to produce and carry out a plan to enhance security operations during the COVID-19 pandemic and reduce the spread of the virus at passenger screening checkpoints and among the TSA workforce.
* HR-1893, to require the TSA to survey its workforce on how it has handled COVID-19 and develop a transportation security preparedness plan for future communicable disease outbreaks.
* HR-1895, to authorize the TSA to detail staff to other DHS components and agencies to improve response efforts to public health threats to the transportation security system and to require it to conduct a risk analysis of the government’s preparedness to respond to public health threats to the transportation security system.