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 Reporter March 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Maritime Security

GofM Drill Rig Damaged, Coast Guard Monitoring

The Coast Guard is overseeing response efforts, as the offshore drilling rig ENSCO 8506 began taking sea-water into a ballast tank after being hit by a large wave

China denies naval snub for Japan over fleet review

China's navy on Tuesday denied, in a roundabout way, that it snubbed Japan by not inviting it to join in a naval fleet review as part of an international symposium,

Rolls-Royce congratulates US Navy on christening of USS Zumwalt

Rolls-Royce congratulated the US Navy on the christening of the USS Zumwalt, the first of its new and highly sophisticated DDG 1000 multi-mission destroyer class of ship.

People in the News

Least Known Navy Activity? Underwater Shipwreck Archeology

Robert S. Neyland, Ph.D., director of the Underwater Archeology Branch (UAB) of the Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) in Washington, D.C., manages the people who protect more than 17,

Three NOAA scientists honored by White House

The White House yesterday awarded three NOAA scientists with Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers. The award is the highest honor given

US FMC Commissioner Visits Panama Canal Expansion Sites

Counsel to the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission informs that  Commissioner William P. Doyle has recently surveyed the construction site on a visit to the Pacific-side of the expanded Panama Canal.

Government Update

South Stream Gas Pipeline Re-route via Turkey Possible

Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said on Wednesday that Ankara would consider the passage of the South Stream natural gas pipeline through Turkey if Russia made such a request.

Hong Kong Tin Hau Festival

The Tin Hau Festival at Tai Miu Wan will be celebrated this year on 22 April 2014. Coxswains, owners and operators of local vessels are advised that arrangements

US FMC Commissioner Visits Panama Canal Expansion Sites

Counsel to the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission informs that  Commissioner William P. Doyle has recently surveyed the construction site on a visit to the Pacific-side of the expanded Panama Canal.

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics 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: 0.1051 sec (10 req/sec)