Members will hear testimony examining the 9/11 Commission's recommendations regarding transportation security. Senator McCain will preside. Following is a tentative witness list (not necessarily in order of appearance):
Witness Panel 1
The Honorable Thomas Kean
Prepared Statement of Chairman Thomas H. Kean and Vice Chair Lee H. Hamilton National Commission on Terrorist Attack Upon the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation August 16, 2004 Chairman McCain, Ranking member Hollings, distinguished members of the Committee, we thank you for holding this hearing on the 9/11 commission’s recommendations. Mr. Chairman, two years ago, you, Sen. Lieberman and members of Congress on both sides of the aisle worked together in a bipartisan manner to create the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. Similarly, over the past 20 months the members of the Commission, five Republicans and five Democrats, have worked together with a sense of unity and purpose. We stand together in unanimous support of our recommendations. Today, we call upon Congress and the administration to display the same spirit of bipartisanship as we collectively seek to make our country and all Americans safer and more secure. You asked us to address, today, the Commission’s recommendations that touch on areas within the committee’s jurisdiction, including transportation security, communications and technology. We thank you for this opportunity. The ability of Americans to travel safely and securely is central to the exercise of our cherished personal freedoms. The capacity to transport goods efficiently and reliably across the country and throughout the world is indispensable to America’s economic progress. We are a mobile, dynamic society. We depend upon open, accessible, transportation systems. Terrorists know that. It’s the reason they target transportation. It’s why we must stop them. Intelligence Much attention has been devoted to the Commission’s recommendations to change the structure of the intelligence community. We are convinced that these crucial reforms will make the nation safer. But we also know that no matter how good the collection, analysis and sharing of intelligence, we simply cannot expose every terrorist or discover every plot. Therefore, we must defend our critical infrastructure, including transportation, vigorously and consistent with America’s principles and values. TSA Nearly three years ago, Congress created the Transportation Security Administration. Much of the agency’s time and resources have been devoted to organizing itself, while striving to meet various congressional mandates that were essential in shoring up our defenses in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. The bulk of TSA’s attention and funding has been directed toward aviation security—including hiring and training a new federalized screening workforce, and installing explosives detection equipment at the nation’s airports. We still have much work to do in the aviation security arena, including cargo screening and general aviation. We know that terrorists are looking for vulnerabilities in other modes including: · maritime; · rail; · mass transit; and · surface transportation. Mr. Chairman, the American people understand that in a free society we cannot protect everything, everywhere, all the time. But they expect their government to make rational decisions about how to allocate limited resources to address those areas where the terrorist threat to transportation is highest, the nation’s vulnerabilities are greatest, and the consequences of a successful attack most severe. This analysis demands disciplined decision making: Hard choices must be made in allocating limited resources. The United States government should: · identify and evaluate the transportation assets that need to be protected; · set–risk based priorities for defending them; · select the most practical and cost-effective ways of doing so, and · develop a plan, budget, and funding to implement the effort. Strategic Planning Despite congressional deadlines, TSA has developed neither an integrated strategic plan for the transportation sector nor specific plans for the various modes. Without such plans neither the public nor Congress can be assured we are identifying the highest priority dangers and allocating resources to the most effective security measures. In making decisions about how to allocate limited resources to defend our vast transportation network, we believe strongly that TSA must use risk management. This requires that the government evaluate the greatest dangers not only in terms of terrorist intentions as we understand them, but also taking into consideration the vulnerabilities of the nation’s infrastructure and the consequences of potential attacks. In the late 1990s the FAA’s intelligence branch considered the possibility that a terrorist group might hijack a domestic commercial aircraft and crash it into a building. But aviation security policymaking was a threat-based system. The intelligence community had no specific evidence that terrorists were plotting to conduct such an operation, therefore suicide hijacking was dismissed as unlikely. Had the major consequences of such an attack been considered, it would have demanded stronger action. The fact is, Mr. Chairman, we did imagine 9/11. We just didn’t imagine that we had to do anything about it. We must not make that mistake again. We need a blueprint for TSA and each mode of transportation. These plans must contain basic elements necessary to assure the public, the administration and Congress that our security systems are comprehensive, properly targeted and well conceived. This includes: · spelling out specific goals; · determining what security standards and practices will be employed to achieve them; · identifying how standards will be enforced and progress measured; · clearly establishing who’s responsible for what elements of the security system; and · recognizing how much the plans will cost and who should pay for implementation and how. These are essential elements of a credible plan. It’s tough work, and requires difficult decisions, but it must be done. The Commission believes that Congress should: · set a specific date for the completion of these vital plans; · hold the Department of Homeland Security responsible for achieving them; and · assure that the agency has the necessary resources to implement them. TSA is now nearly three years old. It has done much good work. However, the time for “planning to plan” is past. We need specific blueprints that provide the architecture to defend critical transportation infrastructure. Layered System In implementing our defenses, Mr. Chairman, we must not lose sight of the fact that no layer of security is foolproof. Previous aviation security commissions, including the Pan Am Commission in 1990, the Gore Commission in 1997 and the National Research Council stressed the importance of the “layered” approach to security. This means instituting redundant defenses to assure that if one layer breaks down, another is in place to provide protection. On 9/11 the only layer of protection to stop suicide hijackers was checkpoint screening—a layer that had a long history of problems. Checkpoint screening permitted the short-bladed knives the hijackers carried. The passenger prescreening program was designed to stop terrorists who might sneak a bomb into checked baggage. The pre 9/11 hijacking response doctrine required flight crew to cooperate with hijackers, presumably because they sought transport or hostages. After the terrorists passed the checkpoints on 9/11 they were virtually assured of successfully hijacking the aircraft. There were no layers of security to stop them. Once it was clear that the terrorists’ purpose was something quite different, the most powerful layer of defense in our country—the public—swung into action. An alert flight crew and passengers made all the difference, and stopped Flight 93 from reaching Washington As the members of the Committee know well, layering has long been a useful tool in promoting aviation safety. Redundant systems on aircraft assure that if a mechanical or electrical problem occurs, back-up systems are in place to assure that a single-point failure is not catastrophic. We must use the same approach in security. As it plans and implements transportation security, TSA must take into consideration the full array of possible enemy tactics, and assure that we have multiple, effective layers coordinated to stop them. Congressional Oversight Before 9/11 FAA’s security division listed the various ways in which commercial aviation could be attacked and the corresponding defenses. As the events of 9/11 proved, this matrix was incomplete. We think it’s very important that Congress provide vigorous oversight of these planning documents and their implementation. The TSA should be required to list all the various forms of attack and the different tactics that terrorists could employ. It should identify the layers in place to address each form of attack, and evaluate the reliability of each layer. Such reporting by TSA will help TSA, the administration and Congress better identify and address weaknesses we must fix, as well as pinpoint honestly those areas where we will remain vulnerable in the near term. This effort should be an integral part of the planning and oversight process. Comprehensiveness, transparency, candor and accountability are the watch words. No Fly Lists Mr. Chairman, one of the most important layers of security we can employ is stopping individuals the United States government knows or strongly suspects to be terrorists from entering our country and accessing our transportation systems. We have provided a number of recommendations in the immigration and border protection area. Among them is that the improved use of “no fly” and “automatic selectee” lists. Use of these lists should not be delayed while the argument about a successor to the CAPPS prescreening system continues. · This screening function should be performed by the TSA, not the air carriers. · It should utilize the larger set of terrorist watchlists maintained by the federal government, and · Air carriers should be required to supply the information needed to test and implement this new system. Currently, TSA provides two security watchlists to air carriers. One is a no-fly list of known and suspected terrorists prohibited from boarding a commercial flight. The second is a list of suspicious individuals who should receive special screening at the checkpoint—known as “automatic selectees.” TSA requires that air carriers enforce the no-fly rule and notify checkpoint screeners of individuals who must receive special screening. Under the current policies, however, these lists do not include the names of all terrorists known to the federal government. As we understand it, the intelligence community does not want air carriers to possess many of these names because they could tip-off terrorists or compromise sensitive sources and methods of intelligence collection. As the Commission described in its final report, two of the 9/11 hijackers were placed on the U.S. State Department’s TIPOFF terrorist watchlist in August 2001. However, the names were never reported to the FAA to be placed on a no-fly security directive. This was a missed opportunity to foil at least part of the attack. How, Mr. Chairman, would the United States government explain it to the American people if an individual were allowed to board and attack a commercial plane when we knew that person was a terrorist and had the power to stop them? The only way to avoid this obstacle is to make TSA, rather than the private air carriers, responsible to manage and enforce the “no-fly” lists, using the broadest possible list of terrorist names. If a terrorist attempts to fly, TSA, not the air carriers, should be the first to know and act. TSA has intended to take over the function, but tied it to the implementation of a new computer assisted passenger prescreening system known as CAPPS II. As we know, CAPPS II has languished over privacy concerns. TSA has shelved it. Nevertheless, the government must move forward with implementing the “no-fly” and “automatic selectee” list, and should assume this responsibility as soon as possible. Although there will surely be logistical and technical challenges to implementation, we are confident that if assigned the appropriate urgency, these challenges can be overcome. The Commission also believes that we should continue every effort to share watchlists with nations allied in the war against terror to increase the effectiveness of immigration and transportation watchlisting. Successfully fighting global terrorism requires global cooperation. Checkpoints Mr. Chairman, we all recognize that a vital element of transportation security, particularly at airports, is checkpoint screening to stop weapons from being brought aboard aircraft. We know that Congress has struggled with screener performance problems for many years. It is a very difficult issue. Congress created the TSA to take over the screening function to improve the effectiveness and professionalism of those we entrust to find and stop weapons at the checkpoint. Screeners have a tough job and we’re grateful for their service. Under TSA, they are better trained, better paid and have a career path. However, checkpoint screening still isn’t as effective as it must be. We still have major vulnerabilities. Fixing them will continue to be an ongoing challenge. The TSA and Congress must give priority attention to improving the ability of screening checkpoints to detect prohibited items: · The TSA should conduct a comprehensive human factors study, a method often used in the private sector, to understand problems in screener performance and set attainable objectives, for individual screeners and for checkpoints where screening takes place. · Explosives detection is particularly important and as a start each individual selected for special screening should be screened for explosives. Human factors Certainly, providing better and more effective screening technology is an important strategy in improving checkpoint performance. Technology is crucial and we must vigorously support research and development to make screening equipment more capable and reliable. However, we know that the human element will always be critical in making the essential judgments that are made every day at airport checkpoints across the country. Training, experience, and equitable pay are key to assuring a top screener workforce – but not sufficient. Other factors are obviously coming into play affecting screener performance. Only by understanding these factors can we maximize the effectiveness of what will always be a critical component of our transportation, as well as border security, function. In the case of 9/11 we saw the important role that the human element played. An immigration official stopped the 20th hijacker from entering the country because he used his experienced judgment. An air carrier customer service representative at Dulles designated two of the hijackers as security selectees because he found them to be suspicious. As we stated in our report, we do not suggest that this should be an invitation to arbitrary exclusions. But any effective system has to grant some scope --perhaps in a little extra inspection or one more check--to the instinct and judgment of well trained human beings. It can make all the difference. Explosives One of the lessons the Commission learned is that after aviation incidents in the past, such as Pan Am 103 and TWA 800, the nation reacted with a battery of initiatives to address the perceived problem. Some refer to it as “fighting the last war.” Of course, we must fill the gaps exposed by incidents. It would be irresponsible to do otherwise. However, we must not only look back, we must constantly look forward and commit ourselves to stopping the “next war.” In this regard, we believe TSA should better address the issue of explosives. We must expand efforts to ensure that passengers are fully screened for explosives at checkpoints, beginning with a focus on automatic selectees and others chosen for additional security scrutiny. The shoe bomber case involving terrorist Richard Reid is an example of this vulnerability which must be addressed. The Commission’s report highlighted two other key components of the effort to address the explosives threat. The first is moving forward with in-line explosive screening of checked bags. Today, many of the machines used to screen checked baggage for bombs sit in the public lobby of airports. Passengers, air carrier personnel or TSA workers must haul bags to the machines where they are screened and then sent back to the conveyer belt for transport to the loading areas. The Commission supports an effort to move explosives units out of airport lobbies and into a secured area where they can be integrated into the process of moving the bags from the check-in counter to the loading area in a seamless, in-line process. This will promote greater security, because: · screening machines will not be exposed to the public; · screeners will be able to focus on screening bags rather than moving them; and · fewer people will be congregated around machines in the public area Moreover, processing bags from checking to loading through an in-line system is functionally more efficient making travel more convenient as well as more secure. TSA has identified this initiative as a priority but it is expensive—estimated to be $5 billion for the major airports. Because the airlines and airports will benefit, they should share in the cost of the effort. The Commission understands that at some airports structural changes at the airport will be required to accommodate the effort. This will take time and money but we should get about the business of making it happen. The issue of cargo security is also crucial. TSA must improve its efforts to identify and physically screen cargo. This endeavor should be matched by assuring that all passenger aircraft have at least one hardened, blast-resistant container to hold suspect and randomly chosen cargo. The FAA identified this reform as a goal over six years ago and it remains undone. Much has been done and can be done to reduce the cost and increase the effectiveness of such containers. We are confident that the private sector will respond with even further innovations as we move forward with the recommendation. Maritime This Committee was instrumental in passage of the Maritime Transportation Security Act. The Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protectorate have set up large databases to track cargo, ships, and sailors so that they can search for anomalies indicative of high-risk cargo or terrorists on approaching ships. It established more than 100 security zones around particularly sensitive or vulnerable coastal installations, such as major naval bases, key landmarks, power plants, and oil refineries near major cities. All major U.S. ports have implemented some physical security measures to prevent terrorists from gaining easy access to ships, facilities, or cargo. As part of this effort, the Coast Guard has established new rules for ships approaching the United Sates. Notwithstanding these important efforts to strengthen maritime security, vulnerabilities remain. Mandated vulnerability assessments of the nation’s 50 largest ports are not scheduled to be completed for years. Despite recent initiatives, the vast majority of all containers enter the country unchecked, and documentation requirements are easy to circumvent. The Commission believes that the Department of Homeland Security must continue to focus efforts on identifying, tracking and screening suspect containers. Recovery Mr. Chairman, we all agree that stopping attacks is crucial. We properly focus on what we can do to uncover plots through better intelligence, stopping a terrorist from boarding a plane, uncovering a shipping container holding a bomb, and discovering a weapon in a carry-on bag. We will find needles in the haystack. But we also know that in a free and open society we won’t find them all. We will always have vulnerabilities. The country must understand that and come to grips with it. We cannot let our focus on prevention stop us from the necessary planning and preparedness to respond if something does happen. If attacked, we must have the capacity to respond swiftly, contain the consequences effectively, and recover fully as soon as possible. We identified communications as a critical element at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Somerset County, Pennsylvania crash sites. Multiple agencies and multiple jurisdictions responded to the incidents. Compatible and adequate communications among public safety organizations at the local, state, and federal levels was a significant problem. We believe that Congress should provide for the expedited and increased assignment of radio spectrum for public safety purposes. Expanding the radio spectrum for public safety is not a silver bullet, but it is one very important piece to solving the interoperability and “intertalkability” problem that first responders face. Overcrowded radio channels mean that public safety personnel cannot communicate with other agencies responding to the same emergency. That puts first responders – and the public – in danger. Enhancing public safety communications can assist in saving lives and reducing damage from any type of disaster — be it natural or manmade, such as terrorism. This is an issue on which this Committee has enormous expertise. We understand that there are due process issues involved in reclaiming spectrum for emergency services and that powerful interests will oppose the initiative. We did not delve into the details of reorganizing spectrum assignment, but the principle that public safety should take precedence is one in which we strongly believe, and that the public will firmly endorse. Conclusion In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, we are mindful that our recommendations will cost money. Though we did not have access to OMB or CBO budget experts, we believe the improvements in aviation security we recommend could cost about one billion dollars per year over the next five years. We are mindful that is a substantial investment. But we have seen the devastating costs in human life and economic disruption that result from a successful attack. It is a worthwhile investment, and one necessary to fulfill the government’s Constitutional duty to provide for the common defense. We wish to thank you and this committee for holding this hearing. As one of the primary authors of the Commission’s founding statute, we are grateful, the 9/11 families are grateful, the nation is grateful for your leadership and vision. On the day the Commission released the final report, the mother of a victim from the World Trade Center was asked by a reporter what she thought about the recommendations and the need to improve homeland security. She held up a picture of her grandchildren. With tears in her eyes, she pointed to the picture and said, “this is what it’s all about.” On behalf of all the Commissioners, we would simply say—that, indeed, is what it’s all about. Thank you. ###
The Honorable Lee Hamilton
See Governor Kean's testimony.
The Honorable Asa Hutchinson
TESTIMONY OF ASA HUTCHINSON UNDER SECRETARY FOR BORDER AND TRANSPORTATION SECURITY DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY ON 9/11 COMMISSION RECOMMENDATIONS ON TRANSPORTATION SECURITY BEFORE THE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION UNITED STATES SENATE AUGUST 16, 2004 Good morning Mr. Chairman, Senator Hollings, and Members of the Committee. Thank you for this opportunity to update the Committee on Department of Homeland Security (DHS) actions consistent with the recommendations of the Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States regarding transportation security. First, I would like to thank the Commission, particularly Chairman Kean and Vice Chairman Hamilton, for the tremendous service that they have performed for the Nation in leading the Commission and proposing the comprehensive recommendations found in the 9/11 Commission Report. The Commission’s members have demonstrated dedication, thoroughness, and insight, and their work will help the Nation better prepare to face the continued threats of terrorism. As the Commission recognized, “[t]he U.S. transportation system is vast and, in an open society, impossible to secure completely against terrorist attacks.” However, we are confident that we can significantly protect against threats to the security of our transportation system – yet protect privacy and civil liberties -- by continuing to evaluate vulnerabilities throughout the transportation system, prioritize the risks and focus resources accordingly, and implement layers of security across all modes of transportation. TSA, BTS, and DHS as a whole, the Department of Transportation (DOT), and transportation stakeholders have been working to provide seamless transportation security. Ensuring that our Nation's transportation systems are secure must be accomplished through effective partnering among appropriate Federal, State, local, and private industry entities. I agree with the Commission that no single security measure is foolproof, and accordingly, the Department must have multiple layers of security in place to defeat the more plausible and dangerous forms of attack against public transportation. Without consistent application of reasonable and prudent security measures across modes, we risk creating weak links that may drive terrorism from one mode to another. Since the creation and stand up of TSA nearly three years ago, and the establishment of DHS, we have advocated having layered security. We continue this approach as we are focusing our attention on security in other modes of transportation as well. DHS continually assesses the threats, risks, vulnerabilities, and consequences of potential attacks on transportation systems using a threat-based risk-management approach. Effective, strategic, threat-based planning results from evaluations of available intelligence and assessments of criticality and vulnerability information. These allow us to form a picture of the overall risk environment and devise effective strategies to mitigate identified vulnerabilities. Within DHS, and under the guidance of BTS, TSA has the responsibility for coordinating these efforts in the transportation sector with other DHS components and DOT modal administrations. Currently, all threat information received by DHS is carefully analyzed for its potential impact on any U.S. critical infrastructure or system at home or overseas. IAIP receives information regarding threats to the homeland from DHS entities and the U.S. Intelligence Community, as well as by our State, territorial, tribal, local, and private sector partners. DHS components consult with other agencies security and technical experts to maintain situational awareness of threats and vulnerabilities. TSA has primary responsibility for this activity in the transportation sector, and executes this task in close coordination with its DHS counterparts including the Coast Guard and IAIP. If we conclude that warnings to industry and field operators or operational adjustments are warranted, our response can take a variety of forms. Top government decision makers are alerted immediately, as well as industry stakeholders. IAIP and/or TSA disseminate specific warnings, advisory information, or countermeasures, where appropriate, to local law enforcement and the transportation industry. I would like to focus on some of the key recommendations of the Commission, outlining both the steps BTS and DHS have taken toward addressing them, and our plan for addressing them in the future. Risk-Based Decision Making The Commission recommended that the U.S. government should identify and evaluate the transportation assets that need to be protected, set risk-based priorities for defending them, select the most practical and cost-effective ways of doing so, and then develop a plan, budget, and funding to implement the effort. The plan should assign roles and missions to the relevant authorities (federal, state, regional, and local) and to private stakeholders. Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7 (HSPD-7) directed the establishment of “a national policy for Federal departments and agencies to identify and prioritize United States critical infrastructure and key resources and to protect them from terrorist attacks.” HSPD7 assigned responsibility to DHS to develop a National Infrastructure Protection Plan (NIPP) which will establish roles and responsibilities of federal, state, local and private entities for each sectors’ protection. The Secretary has assigned responsibility to develop the NIPP to IAIP, and TSA has been asked to coordinate development of the transportation-specific chapter. TSA is working in close coordination with DHS components, with the Department of Transportation and its modal administrations, with other key federal, state, local, and tribal agencies, and with appropriate stake-holders in developing this plan. The Transportation Sector Specific Plan (SSP) will delineate roles and responsibilities between the stakeholders and will provide a “roadmap” for identifying critical infrastructure and key resources, assessing vulnerabilities, prioritizing assets, and implementing protection measures. The Transportation SSP will help ensure that these efforts are systematic, complete, and consistent with the efforts in the other sectors. DHS, through TSA and other related agencies, will build on the foundation of the SSP to provide overall operational planning guidance on transportation security. Furthermore, as part of the Transportation SSP, TSA will work with DOT modes and DHS components to develop modal security plans and ensure that they are integrated into an effective concept of operations for management of the transportation sector’s security. Development of the NIPP, and of the Transportation and other SSPs that support it, is well underway and we anticipate completion before the end of the year. As the HSPD-7 mandated NIPP and its supporting SSPs, are implemented, DHS will complete a comprehensive prioritized list of critical assets and vulnerabilities that will address all sectors, including the Transportation Sector. This is one of the primary tools that DHS will use going forward to allocate limited resources in a risk-based and cost-effective way, as recommended by the Commission. TSA in conjunction with IAIP has already analyzed close to 4,000 assets using a TSA-developed criticality model that provides the basis for allocation of our limited resources. Assets identified as nationally critical will have a facilitated vulnerability assessment performed. Others will have the ability to use a TSA developed, free self-assessment tool, among others already available in the private sector, to assess, develop and improve their mitigation capabilities. TSA has developed tools (TSARM, TRAVEL) to assess the risk, vulnerability, and criticality of transportation assets. I’d like to update the Committee on TSA’s Registered Traveler (RT) pilot program which is designed to improve the security screening process by helping TSA align screeners and resources with potential risks. In the pilot, approved travelers will be positively identified at the airport using biometric technology. These volunteer passengers will go through expedited security screening at specially designated lanes. Approved registered travelers will be directed to a designated checkpoint lane where they will provide their Registered Traveler Smart Card containing biometric information (e.g., a fingerprint or iris scan) for identity confirmation. Registered travelers and their carry-on bags will still go through primary screening, but more extensive secondary screening will be largely eliminated, unless they alarm the Walk Thru Metal Detector. We expect this program to provide frequent travelers with a high level of security and an expedited screening experience. The RT program is being piloted this summer at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, George Bush Intercontinental Airport (Houston), Boston Logan International Airport, and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Improved Use of Watch Lists: The Commission recommended that “[i]mproved use of “no fly” and “automatic selectee” lists should not be delayed while the policy discussions about a successor to CAPPS continue. The Commission also said that this screening function should be performed by TSA and it should utilize the larger set of watch lists maintained by the federal government. We agree, and I am very pleased to report that a significant amount of progress has been made since 9/11 that is fully consistent with this recommendation. It is very important to note progress already made by the U.S government in expanding the existing no-fly and selectee lists. Prior to 9/11, there were fewer than 100 names on the “no fly” list. Today, TSA provides carriers with “no fly” and “selectee” lists that have been dramatically expanded. New names are being added every day as intelligence and law enforcement agencies submit new names for consideration. This places a significant burden on air carriers, reservation systems and airline passengers, and we appreciate their efforts and patience as these lists are used and continue to expand. Continued expansion will be possible as integration and consolidation of various watch lists by the Terrorist Threat Integration Center (TTIC) and the Terrorist Screening Center (TSC) progress, and as the U.S. Government is able to assume the responsibility for conducting the list comparisons. On the issue of CAPPS II, after a significant review of TSA’s proposed CAPPS II system, DHS is nearing completion of a next-generation passenger prescreening program that meets our goals of using the expanded no-fly and selectee lists to keep known or suspected terrorists off of planes; moving passengers through airport security screening more quickly; reducing the number of individuals unnecessarily selected for secondary screening, and most importantly, fully protecting passengers’ privacy and civil liberties. A revised program will likely incorporate the valuable lessons we have learned from existing passenger prescreening programs, remove the responsibility from air carriers for conducting watch list comparisons, and improve aviation security. We look forward to working closely with Congress, the privacy and civil liberties communities, and the aviation community to execute a new passenger prescreening program in the most cost-efficient and least-intrusive manner possible. Improvement of Screening of Passengers and Property The Commission recommended that “[t]he TSA and the Congress must give priority attention to improving the ability of screening checkpoints to detect explosives on passengers. As a start, each individual selected for special screening should be screened for explosives. Further, the TSA should conduct a human factors study… to understand problems in screener performance and set attainable objectives for individual screeners and for the checkpoints where screening takes place”. I want to note first that TSA already does conduct some screening for explosives at passenger checkpoints according to protocols designed to apply available explosives detection resources in the most effective way currently possible. That said, we understand that more comprehensive methods must be found for the long term. TSA has initiated 4, soon to be 5, pilot projects to operationally test and evaluate explosives detection trace portals for persons. TSA is also about to initiate an additional 4 pilot projects to operationally test and evaluate document scanners that will detect traces of explosives. Both of these efforts will provide TSA with increased capabilities in the detection of explosives that might be secreted on an individual, rather than within a bag. Additionally, TSA, through its R&D program, is preparing to publish a request for proposals for development of automated explosives detection technology for carry-on items to increase explosives detection capabilities overall at the passenger screening checkpoint. We intend to review deployment options in the near future. In July 2003, TSA completed a comprehensive Passenger Screener Performance Improvement Study, which focused on human factors and utilized the principles of Human Performance Technology (HPT). The study team validated desired screener performance, examined screener practices, and determined factors that influence the gap between these two states. Utilizing the study's findings, in October 2003, we at BTS worked closely with TSA to craft a Short-Term Screening Performance Improvement Plan containing nine broad initiatives and 62 specific action items to provide tangible improvements in screener performance and security. On June 7, 2004, TSA reported to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security that it had completed 57 of the specific actions. Three action items are still in progress, of which two are expected to be completed at the end of this month. A third action item is expected to be completed in the first quarter of fiscal year 2005. The Commission also raised concern regarding the screening and transport of checked bags and cargo, and specifically, the Commission recommended directing greater attention and resources to reducing or mitigating the threat posed by explosives in vessels’ cargo holds, expediting the installation of advanced (in-line) baggage-screening equipment and requiring every passenger aircraft carrying cargo to deploy at least one hardened container to carry any suspect cargo. The Commission also recommended that the Department needed to intensify efforts to identify, track, and appropriately screen potentially dangerous cargo in both the aviation and maritime sectors. As I have testified to previously, BTS agencies and other DHS organizations including the Coast Guard have been working in a variety of ways to improve the security of cargo and we are reviewing these in light of the Commission’s recommendations. With respect to air cargo, TSA has in place security directives requiring random inspection by air carriers of air cargo transported on both all-cargo and passenger aircraft. We also have in place a comprehensive air cargo security Strategic Plan, which will serve as the roadmap to improve the security in the air cargo shipping arena for the next 3-5 years. A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking is under development incorporating the Plan and other enhancements. We have also strengthened air cargo through CBP’s Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT). To join C-TPAT, companies must provide us with the measures they have taken to strengthen the security of their supply chains, from the foreign loading docks of their suppliers to the U.S. border. CBP reviews whether supply chain security best practices are met and will continue to be met. If so, a company is admitted into C-TPAT. Thereafter, CBP validates that supply chain security has been implemented and, where appropriate, suggests improvements. In exchange, companies that meet our security standards get expedited processing at and through our borders. Shippers, brokers, and importers have joined the program in large numbers: from an original group of 7 major importers in December 2001, membership has grown today to more than 5,000 companies. CBP is also implementing advance electronic air cargo requirements under the Trade Act of 2002. This will provide data for the Automated Targeting System (ATS) and the National Targeting Center (NTC) to identify high risk cargo before it arrives in the United States. TSA has hired or has deployed nearly 400 Aviation Security Inspectors (ASIs), of which 100 are all-cargo ASIs brought on in FY 2004 to improve its air cargo compliance rates. TSA inspectors closely monitor air carrier compliance with these directives, and the carriers are meeting or exceeding the required level of physical inspection. TSA has made steady progress in improving the number and capability of the explosives detectors in place at our airports and our related procedures. For checked baggage, there are both short-term and long-term efforts underway in R&D. The Phoenix Project is TSA’s short-term effort (1-3 years) that focuses on three areas: (1) significantly improving currently deployed systems; (2) combining emerging with currently deployed systems; and (3) taking advantage of evolutionary new systems. Simultaneously, new technologies will be developed under the second project associated with the Next Generation EDS Program, entitled the Manhattan II project, announced publicly on April 16, 2004. TSA intends to select multiple proof-of-concept efforts over the course of approximately one year. Upon completion of this phase, TSA will evaluate the results and award system development contract(s) to those concepts and technologies that demonstrated potential. This concludes my prepared remarks. I will be happy to answer any specific questions Committee members may have.