H.R. 2843, TSA PreCheck Expansion Act, as amended

H.R. 2843

TSA PreCheck Expansion Act, as amended

Sponsor
Rep. John Katko

Date
July 27, 2015 (114th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Monday, July 27, 2015, the House will consider H.R. 2843, the TSA PreCheck Expansion Act, as amended, under suspension of the rules.  H.R. 2843 was introduced on June 19, 2015, by Rep. John Katko (R-NY) and was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security, which ordered the bill reported by voice vote on June 25, 2015.

Bill Summary

H.R. 2843 requires the Administrator of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to publish PreCheck application enrollment standards to allow private-sector entities to provide services to support increased enrollment in the program. The standards must allow for the use of secure technologies, including online enrollment, kiosks, tablets, or staffed laptop stations at which people can apply for entry into the program.

The bill requires the Administrator to coordinate with interested parties to deploy TSA-approved, ready-to-market private sector technology that meets the new enrollment standards.  The bill also requires the Administrator to develop and implement a process for approving private-sector marketing of the PreCheck program and a strategy for partnering with the private sector to encourage program enrollment.

The bill further requires the Administrator to leverage Department of Homeland Security (DHS) data and technology to verify the citizenship of those enrolling in the program and assess security vulnerabilities in the application vetting process that includes an evaluation of whether subjecting program participants to recurring fingerprint-based criminal history record checks and checks against terrorist watchlists could strengthen program security in a cost-effective manner.

Background

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) was created “to strengthen the security of the nation’s transportation systems and ensure the freedom of movement for people and commerce.”[1]  TSA seeks to provide the “most effective transportation security in the most efficient way as a high performing counterterrorism organization.”[2]

The TSA PreCheck program “allows low-risk travelers to experience expedited, more efficient security screening at participating U.S. airport checkpoints.”[3]  The program is designed to provide travelers quicker transit through airport security screening and an improved travel experience while maintaining appropriate security safeguards.

According to the bill’s sponsor, “over the last three years, TSA has adopted a more common sense, risk-based approach to passenger screening through the implementation of its PreCheck program . . . I believe it should continue expanding. However, in order to do so, this program must grow and mature in a manner that saves taxpayer dollars while also improving the experience of the traveling public and reducing security risks to aviation.”[4]

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[1] http://www.tsa.gov/about-tsa
[2] Id.
[3] https://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck/what-tsa-precheckR
[4] See Rep. Katko opening statement—“Risk-Based Security: Assessing the Path Forward for TSA PreCheck,” March 25, 2015.

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that implementing H.R. 2843 would have no significant impact on the federal budget.  Enacting H.R. 2843 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Jerry White with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.