The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has forwarded to the White House Office of Management & Budget (OMB) its attempt to collect information related to air cargo screening requirements.
On Jan. 25, 2011, the TSA posted a Federal Register notice—Extension of Agency Information Collection Activity Under OMB Review: Air Cargo Security Requirements—explaining that it opened up to comments on air-cargo screening for 60 days from Oct. 14, 2010. The TSA has since forward the collection of comments on that issue to the OMB, which is accepting comments until Feb. 24, 2011.
Under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA) of 2001 (Public Law 107-71), the TSA is directed to collect information in two specific areas related to air cargo security. Those areas are:
- To establish a system to screen, inspect, report, or otherwise ensure the security of all cargo that is to be transported in all-cargo aircraft as soon as practicable.
- To conduct screening of all property, including U.S. mail, cargo, carry-on and checked baggage, and other articles, that will be carried aboard a passenger aircraft.
TSA must proceed with the information collection request for this program in order to meet the Congressional mandates and current regulations that enable them to accept, screen, and transport air cargo, the notice says. “The uninterrupted collection” of that information will allow TSA to continue to ensure implementation of those vital security measures for the protection of the traveling public, it says.
The information collection requires the “regulated entities,”—including passenger and all-cargo aircraft operators, foreign air carriers and indirect air carriers—to implement a standard security program or to submit modifications to TSA for approval, and update such programs as necessary.
The regulated entities must also collect personal information and submit such information to TSA so the administration can conduct security threat assessments of individuals who have unescorted access to cargo, and any individual who has responsibility for screening cargo, the notice says. In addition, aircraft operators and foreign air carriers must report the volume of accepted and screened cargo transported on passenger aircraft.
TSA will collect identifying information for both companies and individuals whom aircraft operators, foreign air carriers and indirect air carriers have qualified to ship cargo on passenger aircraft.The collection of information involves five broad categories affecting airports, passenger aircraft operators, foreign air carriers, indirect air carriers operating under a security program, and all-cargo carriers. The five categories are:
- Security programs.
- Security threat assessments.
- Known shipper data via the “known shipper management system.”
- Cargo screening reporting.
- Evidence of compliance record keeping.
All comments should include the Docket Number: TSA-2004-19515, and they can be sent by the U.S. Postal Service, or hand-delivered by courier. Send those comments to Joanna Johnson, PRA Officer, Office of Information Technology, TSA-11, Transportation Security Administration, 601 South 12th Street, Arlington, VA 20596- 6011, or to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, OMB.
Comments can also be sent via electronic mail to email@example.com or faxed to (202) 395-6974. Those comments should be addressed to Desk Officer, Department of Homeland Security/TSA.