Legislation Aimed at Reducing TWIC Red Tape

press release
Friday, December 09, 2011

Bill Would Reform Enrollment Process in Flawed TWIC Program.

 

U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) introduced legislation today that would reform the burdensome enrollment process of the Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Worker Identification Card (TWIC) program, which provides biometric identification cards to mariners and other transportation workers in order to allow them unescorted access to secure areas of ports, vessels, and other maritime facilities.  Under current rules, merchant mariners, port employees, truck drivers, and other workers are required to make repeated visits to a TWIC enrollment center in order to apply for and obtain credentials.  For some applicants, the nearest enrollment center can be hundreds of miles away from their home or workplace, requiring two expensive and time-consuming round trips.  By contrast, comparable secure identity documents such as passports and merchant mariner credentials require only one in-person visit and can be returned to qualified applicants by mail. 

 

Senator Ayotte’s legislation would direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to reform the TWIC enrollment process to require only one in-person visit to an enrollment center.  Companion legislation has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA). “Current TWIC requirements place a financial burden and time constraints on workers who rely on these cards for employment,” said Senator Ayotte.  “As millions of TWICs approach renewal beginning in 2012, it is critical that we resolve this problem.  My legislation would remedy one of the TWIC program’s major flaws and ensure that workers do not have to make multiple, costly trips in order to receive TWIC cards.”    

 

Senator Ayotte raised concerns about the TWIC enrollment process during a Commerce Committee hearing in May in questions she posed to Transportation Security Administration Administrator John Pistole.  During the hearing, Senator Ayotte also expressed concerns regarding the results of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that uncovered serious deficiencies in the TWIC program, which have raised doubts about its overall effectiveness.  GAO investigators were able to access secure facilities at U.S. ports during covert tests using counterfeit or fraudulent TWIC cards.  GAO also found that program controls in place are ill equipped to positively identify or confirm an individual’s identity.  Senator Ayotte is continuing to press for additional reforms to close the critical security gaps identified by GAO.

 


Maritime Security

Indian Warships Visit Port Victoria

In a demonstration of India’s commitment to its ties with Seychelles and maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region, Indian Naval Ships Kolkata, Trikand and

White House: Iranian Ships' Actions in Gulf Increase Risk of Miscalculation

Actions by Iranian vessels in several encounters with U.S. warships in the Gulf this week are cause for concern and increase risks of miscalculation, the White House said on Friday.

Australia Warns DCNS after Security Breach

Australian defence officials warned French naval contractor DCNS to beef up security in Australia, where it is preparing to build a A$50 billion ($38.13 billion) fleet of submarines,

People in the News

Jt Study by MOL, Yokohama University for Improving Ocean Shipping Market Forecast

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. today announced that the company and its subsidiary MOL Information Systems, Ltd. have signed a contract with Yokohama National University

Krishnapatnam Port, Maersk Launches Mainline Service for China

Krishnapatnam, the country’s largest all-weather; deep water port on the east-coast of India has marked another milestone towards operational excellence as it launched

Esvagt Makes Vestdavit MissionEase First Choice for Mission Bay

Norway-based boat system and davit-handling specialist Vestdavit has secured a breakthrough order for its unique MissionEase multi-boat handling solution for mission Bays,

Government Update

India Shipping Ministry Enlarges Scope of Sagarmala

India's Ministry of Shipping has formulated a revised Central Sector Scheme to provide financial support to Major and Non-Major Ports as well as State Governments

California: A Strong Shipbuilding State

Fifth in the nation for direct employment, California shipbuilding and repair industry supports nearly 35,000 jobs; Maritime Administrator highlights economic importance

White House Sees a Path to Approval of Pacific Trade Deal

The White House on Monday said it was hopeful it could win congressional approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact before President Barack Obama leaves office,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Naval Architecture Salvage Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0981 sec (10 req/sec)