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tv   Current Former TSA Administrators Testify on Changes Since 911 Attacks  CSPAN  October 21, 2021 9:55pm-12:38am EDT

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the terror attacks on september 11th 2001, he administrators talk about increases in security screenings and enhancements and technology for airline passengers. this is two hours and 40 minutes. >> good morning. i want to thank téa fay as well as former administrator peter and james louis for being with us today and for their leadership and let me say that we've never had a member for this committee which, a group of individuals who have done so much to keep us as a nation safe 20 years in, so i'm looking forward to their testimony. 20 years ago the morning of
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september the 11th the united states ever the most devastating big terrorist attack in history. thousands of lives were lost and many more were taken. in the weeks, months and years that follows, the government engaged in a massive -- to reshape our security system and response to new global threats. most importantly for today's hearing, it was clear that federal authorities needed to be responsible big for -- our nations transportation system. and so transportation security here -- in the 20 years history tsa -- foreign administrators -- . together they represent the majority and you can speak to the incredible change the agency has undergone in the past two decades.
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when tsa began big, a rapid response required a one size fits all approach lead to secure -- primarily using simple metal detectors. over the years, tsa has responded to evolving threats, evolving terror tactics to advance -- for screening and vetting. today the tsa uses modern technology such as advanced imaging technology and computers lead to detect a range of non metallic weapons. tsa has developed a sophisticated big risk based security force to leverage the intelligence to focus limited resources on the most pressing threat. limitedtsa must continue to evs we continue to face new kinds
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of threats. today threats are rising from lone wolves, wolf packs, cybercriminals and public health emergency, and unruly passengers. we also need plans that focuses on passenger aircraft to include other transportation modes and assets such as air cargo, mass transit, and passenger rail, and tighten collectively -- tsa authorities and resources and congress must ensure tsa remain -- to execute its critical mission. i'm eager to hear about with tsa has undergone to meet those threats to travel securely throughout the ongoing global pandemic, unfortunately, even with all the modern
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improvements tsa has made big, some issues remain. there are struggles throughout the history with the well compensated big workforce, and i'm happy to see the biden administration taking steps to improve the situation. on monday, the administrative -- a new memorandum of agreement for the protection -- and the speedy. one of which the ms pd has agreed -- this action response to long-standing calls for third-party appeals process for the tsa workforce. our community administrator, secretary mayorkas and the biden administration have taken this important step. still, a change in the law and significant funding will be needed to provide tsa workers
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with competitive pay that they deserve. i look forward to advancing my bill, the tsa workforce act, and before i close i would also note, chairman i strive to bring diverse commitments before the hearing. there has been diversity among tsa leadership over the years, but only white male administrators have ever been confirmed to lead the transportation security administration. i hope tsa will increase the diversity of its leadership, both for its workforce as well as for the american people. as we look ahead, the missteps of the past two decades will help guide our mission.
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for secure transportation. i look forward to reflecting on those issues today. before i recognize the ranking member, without objection, i include in the record a statement from the american federation of government employees on the subject of today's hearing. again, i thank our witnesses for joining us and for their honorable and steadfast service. i recognize the ranking member, the gentleman from new york, mr. katko, for an opening statement. >> thank you chair, i appreciate us having this hearing. i started out as a subcommittee chair. and it's a subject all worries nearing tear to my heart. once on board, commandeered four commercial aircraft, flying into pennsylvania, the
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pentagon and the twin towers -- crashed into the world trade center or friends of mine. the transportation security administration were created in the months after the terrorist attack. and we have made dramatic changes to our travel landscape. gone are the days where you can meet you are arriving family members at the gate. but with the immense help of the private sector, tsa stood up and established a robust aviation screening system. our nation is truly grateful. over the past years, tsa has continually adapted their screening procedures based on critical intelligence and risk, while also expanding its focus on surface transportation. this is exactly the type of elasticity that the homeland security committee in the wake of 9/11 had envisioned. when our committee was in new york recently, at a memorial for the 20th anniversary of that terrible day, we reflected
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on the nearly 3000 americans that died on 11. we didn't believe it was possible at the time, but tsa and the department of homeland security have been very successful in providing a significant preventing a 9/11 style attack over the last years. that's an amazing feat. i want to keep it that way. i know all members of the committee feel the same way. mister chairman, i ask unanimous consent to enter written testimony from former administrators into the record. we appreciate your service as well as the service of the esteemed panelists before us today. >> without objection. >> thank you. it's impressive that we will hear from four of the seven administrators. i want to thank all of you for what you have done and what you continue to do to keep our country safe. as we approach the 20th anniversary on november 19th, it's imperative that we turn our attention to how tsa should
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be equipped to face emerging threats. i am extremely concerned that our withdrawal from afghanistan will create new vulnerabilities. as terrorist threats continue to evolve, tsa needs to accelerate its deployment of next generation technology and biometrics at checkpoint. we cannot delay these investments or set movement at a snail's pace, lest we risk being caught flat-footed once again. these technologies include credential authentication technology, computed tomorrow graffiti, advanced imaging technology, standoff detection and so much more. tsa must be agile and ensure that its workforce is positioned to encounter the involving threats. as former administrator halle said in a record, these new technologies are critical for security.
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these are tsa's strongest assets. i wholeheartedly agree and i think the employees of tsa for their service to securing the nations transportation system. they dedication has shown through and they have continued to perform critical duties in the midst of a global pandemic. over 10,000 tsa employees have tested positive for covid 19 and 29 have tragically died. i have spoken to administrator pekoske on my concerns that the frontline workforce is not paid enough. i know he shares that concern. transportation security officers have an important job and our pay does not currently reflect that. over time, people say these issues are going to be fixed but they never are. i look forward to the details on the compensation provided to the frontline workforce and what more congress can do. as we reflect on the last 20 years of the tsa and it's 20 years going forward, we must remember one thing. we must never, ever forget.
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with that, mister chairman, i yield back. >> members of the committee, you are reminded that under committee rules, opening statements may be submitted for the record. members are also reminded that the committee will operate according to the guidelines laid out by the chairman and ranking member. i now welcome our panel of witnesses. our first witness is the honorable david pekoske, current administrator of the transportation security administration, a position he held since 2017. in his role, he is responsible for overseeing the execution of the tsa mission to oversee the transportation system, and lead the tsa workforce. prior to his time as tsa administrators, he spent 33 years in the u.s. coast guard,
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where he became the services 26th vice commandant. in addition, david pekoske was selected earlier this year by president biden to be acting secretary of homeland security, ahead of secretary mayorkas's confirmation. i appreciate his willingness to appear on this panel. our next witness is the honorable peter neffenger, administrator from 2015 to 2017. he is a retired admiral and the u.s. coast guard. under his leadership, tsa developed use of automatic screening technologies, examined air airport security, and cultivated relationships to resolve long checkpoint delays at airports across the country. vice admiral neffenger is a
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veteran of the u.s. coast guard, where he served as the 29th vice commandant, before being nominated by barack obama to be tsa administrator. our third witness is the honorable john s. pistole, tsa administrator from 2010 to 2014. he is president of anderson university, his alma monitor. during his tenure at tsa, he oversaw the creation of the pre-check program on with the first administrator to grant the tsa workforce numbers collective bargaining rights. he has 26 years with the federal bureau of investigations, where he led the counter-terrorism division following the 9/11 attacks. in 2004 he rose to the position of deputy director of the fbi.
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our fourth witness, james loy, was administrator from 2002 from 2003. he came upon his position after being commandant of the coast guard. he served on the day of the 9/11 attacks, and as one of the earliest leaders of tsa, he oversaw the launch of many tsa operational activities and the hiring of tens of thousands of newly minted tsa employees. he later served as the deputy secretary of homeland security under president george w. bush, capping off a career in public service spending more than four decades. without objection, the witnesses full statements will be inserted into the record. i now ask administrator pekoske to give his opening statement for five minutes. >> senator thompson,
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representative katko and other members. thank you for your statements. i appreciate the opportunity to appear with former administrators. they each continue to make substantial contributions to our country, they are my friends and colleagues. it is my honor to build on the foundation they established. each year we remember the 9/11 attacks and the 2977 people who perished. and our members at csa headquarters this year and the airports around the country, our theme was, united memory together in mission. i, like many of you, remember that day like it were yesterday. the terrorist attacks carried out on our homeland -- i remember what it also felt like for the country to unite around shared experience. we vowed to never forget and never again. our motto on tsa is, not on my watch.
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in living this motto, this purpose was so evident on 9/11 and it continued to endure. the congress passed the aviation security act, establishing tsa. since our first major reauthorization, you have provided us with the authorities needed to protect the transportation system. the theme of this hearing is, the state of tsa, 20 years after 9/11. in assessing the tsa, i would respectfully submit that the state of tsa is very strong. we continue to accomplish our mission and address threats to our transportation system. we are achieving our mission of being a professional workforce and doing our part to outmatched dynamic threats. i would like to highlight elements of this success. agility, partnerships and our people, particularly relevant
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to this hearing. first, agility. the intelligence communities work in assessing threats has allowed us to mitigate these when it comes to aviation transportation. we have rapidly changed our procedures at airports and at international airports. the intelligence community assessments ensure that this information is rapidly shared with our partners. we are in the midst of a major upgrade in technology and screening checkpoints, around airports around the country. these improve include improved identification and other technologies, improved bag screening using computed two monograph e, and soon, improved screening through enhanced imaging technology. the net result of these advancements is twofold. significant ineffectiveness and -- i thank you for your support. they are critical for our
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continued success. additionally, exercising the agility provided in law, we recently issued security directives to improve cybersecurity in our nation's most critical gaps. we plan to expand the cybersecurity effort to include all critical transportation security infrastructure. the second key element to success is partnership. we have outstanding partnerships with other agencies as well as our partners in state, local, tribal, and territorial governments. we work very closely with our international partners to ensure global aviation security, especially at last point of departure airports. i appreciate your support of our one stop security efforts, to enable us to pilot security efforts at select international locations. this will improve aviation security. the partnerships we have with the operators. this level of engagement has allowed us to improve security at a pace and level of sophistication that would not otherwise be possible. with that, the security and
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convenience benefits to passengers, who use these systems every day. without question, a key element of our success is our people. i could not be proud of them. they professionally ensure secure travel to millions of people every single day. i have worked tirelessly to earn their trust and provide the support and guidance that they need to accomplish their critical mission. i continue to strongly support adjustments to all people, including our frontline workers. regarding our screen screening workforce in particular, i would add to comments. we have already transition to adverse projection boards and soon i will sign a new directive enabling full collective bargaining rights. we are united in memory, together in mission. i thank you for your opportunity and i look forward to your comments on questions. >> thank you very much. i now ask a summary of the
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statement for that. >> thank you, mister chairman. good morning to you. and the distinguished members of the committee. thank you for inviting me to join, my distinguished colleagues and good friends. recognizing the 20th them in overseer the tsa. and recognizing what is the critically important service that provide store nation. this is essential to our prosperity and our resilience and is a key component of the national security where the greatest privileges of my career was best served of the men and women of the tsa and our nation is more secure because of their work and i remain grateful for their service. the mission encompasses the full spectrum of our nations transportation, aviation maritime, mass transit, passenger, road motor carriers, interstate pipelines and more. it's an extraordinarily dynamic --
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even more so by continually evolving -- and transportation security today -- the 20th anniversary that we sadly commemorated this month. they offered the means and instruments to strike in america. we recounted the history of the nation's tragic event and already highlighted the many accomplishments of tsa. my colleagues described -- building up upon this, we are safer and more secure because of the rebuilding -- we've developed more technology and integrated among many stakeholders for people who access and are working with critical areas. we've become exceptionally adept at counter measuring
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attacks. they are essential. security is -- as terrorists -- today security system, as good as they are not sufficient for tomorrow. adversaries are agile, adaptive, aggressive, and creative. there's no perfect system, no ideal technology and we got it right moment. systems and technologies need to be adaptive. to protect against what has happened. that imagination is key. terrorists and criminals are dangerous entrepreneurs, always taking advantage and these including recently sophisticated interdependent -- shocking lessons of the global 19 pandemic. vulnerabilities because of --
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moreover, barriers to entry with respect to cyber -- the colonial pipeline attack -- dramatically illustrate the ease with which the critical infrastructure could be attacked. and minister for -- including -- the tsa innovation passport and capabilities analysis are working hard to innovate faster than our adversaries but their work is requiring reliable funding to succeed. i would ask that the committee fund the system so that they continue to evolve. i urge you to support efforts in research and development efforts to include robust private sector engagement and open architecture -- coordinated, ongoing,
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operationally focused and integrated -- its the security of the never ending reason we need to stay in the lead thank you for your continued and steadfast support over the years and for support of the thank you again. >> think you very much. i know ask mr. pistol to summarize his statement. >> thank you mister chairman, good to see you sir. [inaudible] -- i would also like to thank the rest of the committee and the professional staff who make this hearing possible. i have three points i would like to make. first i strongly encourage you and the administration to continue support for the tsa
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administrators -- a couple of examples. one from an innovation perspective that i experienced in my four and a half years as administrator. we are all familiar with the october 2008 queue ap -- out of yemen. where bombs were being sent to chicago. that plot was foiled and i -- that ascertained working with the head of saudi arabia. and the chief counsel, both of csa and security operations and international affairs, of course all those a dhs
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headquarters -- literally barred any and all cargo from being shipped into the u.s.. there were a number of ramifications and consequences on that action when it comes to bombs are being shipped to the u.s.. the innovation aspect of the authorities with the team that ian heritage at tsa, alan burr son -- all the aspect of the broad authorities with the leadership team that i inherited and then to launch the tsa pre-check program with nearly 11 million people in addition to those global entry program. thank you, chairman thompson and other members of the committee who have the foresight for crafting legislation to provide
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authority and take immediate action to mitigate a clear and present danger and also to implement a risk based security initiative -- to makes traveling safe for law-abiding citizens. moving from a one size fits all to risk based approach would encourage the entire committee to support the tsa workforce with a key issue with the efforts to be made to improve or for those initiatives, but then the comments on the collective bargaining, since i was the administrator, but then as the union bought representing the end, this unique agreement. i would like to comment on the collective bargaining. yup yup --
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a good job of representing them in this unique, non-traditional agreement. with the chief counsel of tsa and david war, there are the two constants for the last ten years. their determination provide good legal advice, context and clarity moving forward. i support and encourage with my two successors have done in terms of innovation, because it does not happen in a vacuum. through investment and key technologies. and then in partnerships. in the private sector -- for tomorrow and years to come. in partnership with manufacturers, the airlines, the airports, the associations,
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north america, a trial association, the railway industry association and the international -- those are all critical to the success of tsa. with the underwear bomber, and then the non metallic explosive device -- i mentioned terrorists who are determined. breakthrough technology -- quote, failure of imagination. we have to ensure that doesn't happen again. my last point is on cybersecurity. we need innovation, partnerships, evaluate and repeat. thank you, mister chairman. i can take questions.
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>> thank you very much. and now you can summarize your statement. mr. james and lloyd. >> thank you, chairman. and members of the committee. i appreciate being included on 9/11 i joined millions of my fellow citizens as we watch the events of that day unfold. they evacuated over half 1 million people from manhattan to staten island, new jersey. that day remains to me and for all americans the equivalence of pearl harbor. i remember we came to terms with the reality that the two great oceans no longer were going to provide any guarantee that america cannot be reached by those wind tend to do us harm. the result in legislation created first tsa and the department of homeland security
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-- or announcements to the world. we had to await to this new terrorism threat. the days that followed included the most significant an executive branch we organization since 1947. the coordination with congress produced the tsa act outlining the establishment in the shape of this new executive agency. where the faa has been responsible for both safety and security of commercial aviation, the new law, the security elements -- to be the responsibility of the new tsa. for obvious reasons, the law mandated that the new agency focus on all modes of transportation. the legislation provided a road map and we set up to establish the agency. it was probably the most gratifying, yet challenging years of my 42 years as public service as we took that on. we recruited applicants for
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60,000 positions at airports across the country. those applicants were vetted, hired, trained and distributed over to 400 airports in nine weeks. we allowed the reality to shape and involve the agency which has continued today. we worked with all the major airlines, trade association, the government agencies, foreign advisers, commercial vendors to design an op-ed of thousands of checkpoints to provide physical security required by the law. i will never forget the night of 12:31, december 31, 2003, when i was able to report to the than secretary norman -- to the airport on guam, it was for gaining operational compliance with the law. as in any endeavor of this magnitude, it required contributions from many to be accomplished well and on time. as is also the case with any such endeavor changes were made in policy and practice as i and
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my successors led and managed the agency over the years, from which you already heard. mister chairman, several things stand out to me as being deserving of the committee's ongoing attention. first, and it's been mentioned already, the adequacy of the tsa to the intelligence community for threat analysis and for the evolution of what that threat means in the days and weeks of the agency itself. adequate attention to all modes of transportation, not just aviation, it's clearly reasonable, that we are focused on aviation over the years, but terrorist incidents, for example in london a -- london subway systems and rail systems, make those serious issues as well, and i appreciate the committee's ongoing attention to all modes of transportation, not just aviation. and then a constancy focused on response and recovery as well as preparedness and prevention
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planning for dealing with any scenario that would interrupt the constitution system. mister chairman -- leading the agency. we just met together for the 20th annual ceremony remembering the events of 9/11, 2001. the staff and employees always knew their oath of commitment to remain vigilant and their quest to keep america secure. i take no comfort in the fact that 20 years have gone by without another 9/11. we have to remain still -- vigilant and diligent and focused on today and tomorrow, and this hearing is to meet a formal statement about how important leslie -- relentless villages to keeping our safe going into the future. thank you very much, mister chairman. i look forward to your questions. very much mr. chairman alec forward to i thank the witnesses for their testimony. obviously your unique role
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within tsa speaks for itself. so i remind each member that you will have five minutes to question witnesses. tsa is a unique agency. no other agency can act so intermittently with [inaudible] on a daily basis. all of us can remember when we first started, admiral loy, we were basically trying to put it together, because we needed to do it. so the men and women did a wonderful job. they have come a long way. they have done threaten allison this. and the threats have changed from time to time. when i would like to do is go
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from our current administrator back to admiral loy to talk about what did you find most challenging during your tenure leading tsa? if you could point to that issue, an issue that you felt it's that you just had to somehow address? with our current administrator, i am sure you can start us off with that. >> yes, chairman, thank you. i would say that what i found most challenging is something we have already talked about this morning. that is to ensure that we adequately compensate our workforce. i saw no one disagreed with that at all. everyone agrees. it's just finding the funding to be able to execute on a very important priority for all of
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us. and that's one of my top priorities as the administrator. the other thing i would mention, from my four years, plus, now in this year, is that one thing that is very exciting about the administrator ship of tsa, and what requires focus, is that there are a lot of things that come up very very every single day. there are a lot of priorities that every one of us would look at us and say, we've got to get that done, we've got to get that one done. the challenge is to establish his clear priority so that we get a concrete set of actions in place. the key here as well, and my predecessors have already commented on this, is that it's not just tsa acting alone. we have to act with our partners. our partners are part and parcel of a successive security regime in this country. so it's providing this strategic direction to keep focused on true north and to get the most important priorities done. but i would say, sir, the most
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challenging -- i hope to see some positive success on this in the next few months, particularly for frontline workforce. >> thank you. admiral neffenger? >> i would certainly echo everything that administrator pekoske just said. getting adequate pay to the front line is critical and key. it's a challenging and demanding jobs out there. one thing that really struck me when i came to tsa was how skilled those frontline tsos are in that job. i think the average traveler has no real appreciation for how much work it takes to be really good at what they do out there. so let me echo that. a couple of challenges i saw were -- as you know, during my tenure we saw a dramatic and significant increase in the number of people traveling on a daily basis. we climb to over 2 million
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passengers a day and screenings at tsa checkpoints. these involve staff shortages and other challenges that we have had. other findings that were inadvertently leaked, a classified report leaked to the public. tsa has been in a crisis situation with a demoralized frontline workforce. one challenge we had was rebuilding confidence in the agency and rebuilding a sense of morale to the frontline workforce that was unfortunately the brunt of most of the criticism that came out. it's not the frontline workforce that deserve it, it's the people that led the agency and who failed to frontline workforce. so i think it was, in my mind -- it was one of the more gratifying aspects of my tenure. as i watch the frontline workforce really regain its confidence and focus on what
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they did, getting good. that was a particularly challenging time for tsa. and i have been really proud of what they have accomplished. and have continued to accomplish in the current administration. thank, you mister chairman. >> mr. pistole? one >> thank you, chair thompson. i think when i arrived as administrator in 2010, part of the challenge was to provide the opportunity to [inaudible] . and also helping professionalize the workforce in a way that they had not been afforded previously. and give them flexibility and also create and expand on the office workforce engagements. and the office of professional responsibility. so i come from the fbi, an agency around for more than 100 years, we had time to really build some of that
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infrastructure, say, systems and processes. and see how consistent the adjudication of misconduct and things have been. so we would get that opportunity and we had great support from the department from you and others on the hill. and obviously from the workforce to say, yes, we are taking the steps now to professionalize and provide that exceptional service that is expected for the 2 million-plus passengers each day. those are some of the challenges. >> [inaudible] thanks, mister chairman. i think my recollection in the standout process was a simple recognition from those of us who were in the middle of the crucible, so to speak, recognizing that we did not have a corner on the market for headaches. we reached out, as you point out, to partnerships, to trade associations of commercial
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aviation and land transportation elements of our country. i remember a personal association with the then president of southwest airlines, a remarkably visionary kind of guy, now passed unfortunately. but it was his willingness, as head of a major airline, to really get in there and figure out the things needed to do next. so i think the citizens, through lots of walks of life, standing there and being willing to be counted and willing to participate in the design of this new agency, it's a large portion of their lives. and so that includes even national reach. i remember my colleagues at the israeli security agency, well known for their 40 years of
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focus around the globe. they could not have been more deliberative. allowing me to check on the way they do businesses, in israel. we were able to bring back and integrate that design of checkpoints that were critical to our early stand out process and i think establishing standards as well, the lower of which we could never go to, and make a secure performance out of our new agency. so it's that partnership business and recognizing that we need to open our doors. we had established an idea, to help us, to help us establish this agency. >> thank you very much. let me just say, all four of
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you have talked about the workforce, how we need to make sure that there is adequate pay for the job. and give them the support that they need. a lot of us have perceived that for quite awhile and i look forward to working with the administration to make that a reality. tsos, like all other employees are in effect giving of themselves. the chair recognizes the ranking member from new york for five minutes. >> thank you, mister chairman. it's good to see all the witnesses today. it's been a while since i had seen you, mr. neffenger and the others. so i'm happy to have this moment to chat with you. i don't have a question on the employee issue but i do want to make the statement and make a
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clear, which i think i did at the last hearing. since i have been in congress we have been talking about better pay for frontline workers. and we have made minimal progress. that's why i made clear my opposition to title five funding. let that be a warning, if we don't get that issue fixed, i will support it going forward. the reason i was concerned about the funding last time is that i think people in the headquarters get paid quite a bit of money. they are doing just fine. i am worried about the frontline workers. and that they have adequate pay, given the serious job they have. so i would love to see a warning shot -- i'm not backing down from making sure they get this funding. it's well past time for us to institutionalize that salary for them. admiral pekoske, i want to stick with you because you are in the job now. i agree with what mr. pistole he said about emerging technologies.
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they seem to be quite adept at creating those. and someone who relies on myself phone, and take it out an airplane -- so, i think that computed tomography is key. my concern is that computed tomography will take so long to implement, given the budget constraints we have, that it is going to be obsolete soon by the time we get it in. so can you tell us, briefly, can you tell us what you need, to get 100% ct technology at all the airports nationwide? and how long will take? >> thanks for your comments. i couldn't agree more. ct is one of the most important technologies for us to advance in our system. it is already in place in some places thanks to your support and the support of this committee. we also just awarded an option for 314 more of our mid sizing
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of our systems. but when i look at the length of time it will take us to get to all 2400 x-ray systems currently in the country, that's a very long time. and when i asked my teams to look at this, given the contract vehicles that we currently have in place, how much could we spend every year, reasonably, to be able to accelerate the implementation of this very important technology. the answer is about 350 million dollars a year, just for nor ct -- >> [inaudible] >> probably about five years to get it all done. but this is practicality. i mean, we can't just replace them all the same time. it needs to be sequence because there is a lot of airport work that needs to be done. there is also manufacturing capability. but it is really critical for us to get this technology in place as soon as we can. i can't even describe, given this venue that we are in, the difference in detect ability
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that this technology provides. it's really critical for us. >> thank you, mister chairman, i just want to prioritize that with the other committees. i think this is a message that is really important for a nation security and aviation security. now i want to talk about one stop security legislation. this will be voted on by the house this week, we hope. it's important bipartisan legislation that will raise the global pay and -- administrator pekoske can you discuss how streamlined international travel will enhance global aviation safety standards? >> yes, i will talk about global aviation security and we do that in a number of ways. we improve the technology baseline with the technology globally. with the airports. because we specify what is needed for screening, this screening we require. and the partnership in the other direction coming to that.
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we will also promote the establishment of common standards for this technology. around the globe, particularly in the nations that have the most advanced aviation systems. we feel that that will drive the technology industry to build those standards. so in total, it brings the entire global aviation system to a much higher level. additionally, part of the one stop security initiative is to do covert testing that is integrated. teams that are integrated with country experts and our experts to assess the effectiveness of the screening regimes we have put in place. so in total, it increases the security of the united states. that's a very good thing. and from your perspective, what that means for a passenger, i use the hypothetical -- let's say, for arguments sake, we have a one-stop agreement with an airport in the united kingdom. what that will mean for a passenger flying from london
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heathrow to jfk on a follow-up flight, let's say to, charlotte, north carolina, they will need to be screened at jfk, that screening will be satisfactory to our purposes. a greatly facilitates travel. and it also improve security. whenever i have looked at technology or policy adjustments and investments, i am looking at that benefit. first and foremost, the improvement of security, and then secondly the improvement of the passenger experience of facilitate travel. >> thank you mister chairman. before i yield back, i want to say to mr. pistole, loy, pekoske and neffenger, i think history will smile kindly upon you. you have made an impossible situation and made it work. so i'm proud of all of the work that you do. and i am proud of the culture that you have created, whereby you listen to oversight, he welcome oversight and you act upon it.
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you have made it a much better agency. so we are on the same team here, remember that, so i appreciate your work for us and we had to do more to help them. i appreciate, mister chairman, and i yield back. >> thank you. the chair will now recognize other members for questions they may wish to ask the witnesses. i recognize members in order of seniority, alternating between majority and minority. members are reminded to unmute themselves when recognized and again meet themselves when they are finished speaking and to leave their cameras on so that they are visible to the chair. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson-lee. >> thank you for yielding, thank you for your leadership. ou for youthank you for having n viewpoint on national security. let me take a moment to salute the transportation security
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administration. i know tsos and i thank them every opportunity i gets. i take a moment to talk to supervisors and managers and others, about their needs and our commitment to their service. let me also thank administrator pekoske for committing to collective bargaining. we all support the chairs legislation on that very important issue of professionalism and of course service. administrator pekoske, let me go through immediately, and as my time wayne that will be quickly going to others. tell us, in a pictorial origination, about the daily protection of stopping various incidences that --
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individuals that may get on planes that you can see over the landscape that our agency and our tsos are stopping. >> thank you, i appreciate that question. i will give you a sense of we detected this calendar year to date in our checkpoints. if we start with live weapons, these are weapons that have a round chamber or a magazine inserted into the weapon. we detected 4300 plus live weapons in our screened checkpoints. the rate of weapons carriage in our checkpoints is about two times per million passengers what it was in 2019. generally, when i have referenced this activity i go back to 2019 because that was the pre-covid year. other weapons which would be anything from stun guns to replica weapons, almost 3400 other weapons. then we go into prohibited items, things like knives, throwing stars, things of that nature. about 3250 prohibited items.
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then one of the things that are very important to our system is that we validate the identity of every single passenger as they approach the screening checkpoint. this is designed to ensure that we do provide the right level of screening based on the risk that a passenger may represent. so having the right idea is critically important. we detected over 300 fraudulent i.d.s already. and with these technologies, the numbers will continue to go up. i should also mention, and i appreciate your support for our officers and federal marshals. our federal air marshals perform a really critical function of in-flight security and security in and around the airport. we place our federal air marshals on flights where there is more risk than others. this is also a job that is not easy to perform. they have to be alert 100% of the time.
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and ready to jump into action. so i join you and recognizing the terrific work of our frontline workforce. so thank you. >> thank you so very much. admirable neffenger, pistole and loy, please try to get my question in so that all of you can get a few seconds in. the taliban is now in control of afghanistan. we know what happened 21 years ago, or 20 years ago. just an assessment of how difficult or how important tsos are, though domestically based, and we have an infrastructure, in what may be proposed or new volatility. can you go through that really quickly, admiral, in a few seconds, please? >> yes, congresswoman jackson-lee, thank you for the
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question. it's important. i go back to my opening comments. this is where we need great imagination to think about what's elect level of threats may be. and in doing so recognizing -- one, we hope we never catch a terrorist at a checkpoint. there are a lot of failures that would lead to that event happening. but i will tell you, the last line offense of defense in the airport is clearly the tso front line. >> can i jump in? i'm so sorry admirable. >> that's fine. >> there is still a number of gaps in intelligence collection opportunities. and the threat posed by the taliban. so the tsos in the tsa are the last line of defense, it is incumbent and crucial that they are doing their job in the most professional way they can to make sure that nothing slips through the cracks.
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>> mr. loy? >> i would endorse what has been said. the criticality of the link between intelligence and the tsa and the rest of the intelligence community. it is absolutely crucial to imagine in advance what the scenario could be so that we can plan. i would just highlight the criticality of the linkage between intelligence wings and the rest of the intelligence community. >> thank you so much, i'm sorry for cutting you off. thank you. i appreciate all of you and tsa and the workforce. thank you again. >> >> the chair recognizes the gentleman from louisiana, mr. higgins. >> i would like to come in the chair and the ranking member for holding this hearing today on the state of tsa 20 years
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after 9/11. we certainly as a body salute our frontline agents that struggle every day in order to keep america safe. on 9/11, nine of the 19 hijackers have been flagged in some manner by federal aviation as potential terror threats and yet they were still allowed to get on a plane due to the security protocols at the time. of course, the nation has responded. responded with the creation of homeland security and tsa and over the last 20 years we have adjusted as american citizens to this new and enhanced level of screening and safety and we appreciate the professionalism that we witness every day. we have evolved.
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tsa has changed. and american citizens have adapted to those changes. we expect that the intelligence failures prior to 9/11 will not be repeated. the pentagon is actively warning congress of the increased likelihood of attacks on u.s. soil. it is critical that in this time of heightened threat levels that all gaps in our national security are reviewed and sufficiently addressed. it's with that spirit that i point out that the tsa website currently has 60 forms of identification accepted to get on an airplane. these documents are not codified and law. they are subject to change based on bureaucratic orders and rules. the tsa website states that in coordination with the essay and other counterparts, it
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identifies acceptable alternative identification for use in special circumstances at the checkpoint. many would consider this a loophole. a loophole that has allowed undocumented human beings to access our airplanes across the country. through tsa. so administrator pekoske, can you address that, sir? in a brief response? as secretary mayorkas instructed tsa, to allow undocumented migrants to board a plane without one of the acceptable documents? >> we work with undocumented new arrivals to the country that need follow on air travel to ensure that we are sure who they are. we --l to >> excuse me, mr., you are saying that you are sure who an
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undocumented immigrant is that is getting on an airplane, although the department of homeland security itself and border patrol will readily admit, we are not positive who they are? in most cases we are accepting who they tell us they are. but you are telling me that you know who they are? that is why you are saying right now? >> what i'm saying is that we use the very same data that customs and border protection -- >> exactly, so sir i'm just asking, america needs to know. america needs to know. i get it, you are accepting with customs and border protection is telling you. but america needs to know, are undocumented, illegal immigrants that have been transported to another part of our country, are they getting on airplanes without a picture i.d. and with out the american government, customs and border protection, tsa, homeland
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security -- are they getting on airplanes to travel when we readily admit that we are not sure who they are and they do not have photo i.d.? and they do not have one of the tsa's own 16 forms of acceptable identification that americans themselves need? it's a yes or no. are these people getting on a plane with it? >> people are getting on planes after they are thoroughly screened -- >> thoroughly screened by who? >> by the tsa, sir. >> screened by tsa? you mean, going through the checkpoints, like -- >> yes sir -- >> just clarify, please -- >> we are sure -- >> just clarify pleas in the interest of time. like, i have to go have my photo i.d. to go through tsa checkpoints. does an illegal immigrant, being transported somewhere else in the country, on an airplane, are they required to have a photo i.d.? yes or no? >> we have processes for people that do not have -- >> are they required to have a
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photo i.d.? my god, it's hard to get a straight answer. >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> can the gentleman answer my question, sir? can you extend that courtesy, mister chairman, can the gentlemen answer my question? >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> can the gentleman answer my question? mister chairman, i object -- >> the [inaudible] >> -- and yet republicans are not. >> no, no -- >> can mr. pekoske answer my question? it's a yes or no answer. >> the gentleman's time has expired. if you do not recognize it i will cut your mic off. >> well please -- >> [inaudible] >> it's a simple yes or no, you have allowed my colleagues to answer the question. >> you can be civil, mr. -- >> i'm trying to be civil -- >> it's a yes -- [inaudible]
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>> it's a yes or no question, any answered or not? >> i'm not going to put the administrator in this position, your time is expired. >> wow, thank you mister chairman. >> thank you, mister chairman. >> can you hear me sir? >> yes, we hear you. >> thank you. this is for mr. pekoske and pistole. over the years, tsa has rolled out very sophisticated technologies to provide formidable defense against
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terrorist attacks. unfortunately, tso pay and have not evolved with the rest of the agency, as many longtime employees remain near the bottom of the pay scale. unlike the other pay systems that you find in most federal agencies, tsa pay and its system have not provided for a regular salary increases. salary increases are not built into salary baselines. and identifying funding to fix the problem has proven to be difficult for congress and multiple administrations across party lines. do you believe that tsa employees should receive regular salary increases as the same level of other federal employees? that's for everyone. >> yes, sir. >> yes i do.
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>> yes i do. >> absolutely. >> great. we are all on the same page. it seems that it's been a 20-year effort to get this enacted. would having such salary increases require [inaudible] budget and appropriations process easier? >> yes, sir. >> yes sir, it would. >> well, i thank you all for your concise answers. i just don't understand why with the legislation that this year has pushed forward, we cannot get to the end goal of
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making our tsos, the frontline, the men and women in the fields, that have kept us safe, for 20 years -- why they cannot be counted in a manner in which they should be. it is just a failure on our part. all of us here. it has not happened. and it really pains me to see this. i don't know -- a situation where ... the people working the hardest, the people on the front lines, the people doing the grunt work at
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times. why they are not compensated as well as the people in the lofty offices ... and it's just not right. it harkens back to, you know, the history in this country, with the people working the hardest are treated the worst. and we just have to stop it. with that, mister chairman, i yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from mississippi for five minutes. >> thank you mister chairman. mr. pekoske i want to thank you for being here and thank you for the hardworking men and women do every day keeping the traveling public safe. we know that tsa officers are dedicated and they are hardworking public servants and they do a difficult job. we know the importance of that job in protecting our homeland. i want to follow up very briefly on congressman higgins
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questioning as it relates to the importance of photo i.d. in the screening process. we know that that is something that has been required now since 9/11, for members of the traveling public, to show some sort of photo i.d.. we know that that is something that you are men and women use during that screening process. i know firsthand from when i was on the border, immigrants who were in the airport, waiting to board flights, they did not have that photo i.d.. and so my question to you is, how can we adequately screen migrants without a photo identification? if we are going to require that of every american, how can we adequately screen those who don't have adequate photo i.d. available to them? >> yes, sir. with migrants that may not have a photo i.d. in their possession, we rely on the
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biometric information that the cbp has collected when they cross the border. we have the technology to have that information right in front of us. right as the person is presenting themselves for screening. as well, our protocols always require different levels of screening based on the level of identifying verification. so if you show up to a checkpoint and you do not have a photo i.d., we have processes in place where we do whatever we can to see if we can establish your identity. in this case, the same process happens with migrants, with our colleagues, and then we provide a screening to make sure that if a person does not have anything that would concern us on the person, in their carry on bag, in their checked baggage -- oftentimes they do not have checked baggage, though. >> let me ask you, has the tsa ever prevented any migrants from boarding flights? flying to the interior?
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has there been instances where tsa that they have told customs and border patrol, that they will not allow migrants to travel? >> i don't have the exact numbers but i am sure that there have been instances where we have not been satisfied within the department and we have gone back and done some additional work. and so the person did not travel at the time that they want to do when they may not have traveled at all. but i don't have the specific numbers in front of me. >> let me ask you about a particular program. cbp as an app that is used, i know that that is something that tsa is working with cbp on. and i would ask the clerk at this time if you would please put up a photo to accompany my question. and i would like this photograph to be entered into the record as well. i will let you know that -- thank you.
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this is a photograph taken at dca and it says they are that photo capture -- the particular section i want to look at is this action that says that photo capture is optional. and migrants may have the ability to decline to have their photo taken. so it seems that we have a two tier system. a system for united states citizens where we are required by law, with tsa requiring us to show photo i.d. before traveling. and then we have a second system for non citizens, in which not only are they not required to show a photo i.d. but they can even declined to have their photograph taken if they decide to do so. and so i would ask, if you could, if it all possible, please talk about the disparity
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we are u.s. citizens travel versus when migrants travel, and why migrants have the ability to declined to have their photograph taken. and yet as a citizen, i don't have the ability to declined to present a photo i.d.. >> i am unaware of any circumstance where we are seeing an undocumented individual to have their photo taken -- >> but they do have that, don't they, not once, but twice -- they have the option? i'm not trying to be argumentative but you would agree that the document says on two different occasions that they have the option to declined have the photograph taken? >> again, i'm not aware of any circumstance where that has occurred. >> the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. correa. >> think you mister chairman, can you hear me okay? >> yes. >> just wanted to thank you mister chairman and mr. katko
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for holding this hearing. i was in new york for the anniversary of 9/11. and mr. pekoske, you are right, i remember, 20 years ago watching civilians run from those burning buildings, when forces founders were running in, knowing they would probably face certain death. at that moment, the united states of america -- the lesson is that we also have to be ready. that's with this hearing is all about. we -- i also chair the subcommittee on transportation. so this issue is very near and dear to my heart. but you know, i look at the issue of equity of pay, now that is an issue of pay but rather professionalism. no one would question what we
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pay our fbi officers. because they do the job. and one of the witnesses mentioned that the last line of defense for airlines is essentially those tsa officers. those people who are looking into the screens, looking at us, who are looking at those passengers, making them open their luggage, making sure there is nothing there that should not be there. so we have to make sure they are professionals, make sure that these folks are there. we need their professional expertise to protect us in the air. so mr. pekoske, i would ask that you continue to think about it as professionalize-ing the workforce, and make sure that americans have the best line of defense, their last line of defense, and that that line of defense is the best.
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i have a question for you, similar to mr. hagan's, when it comes to i.d.s. remembering 9/11, those folks who got on those airlines, they had valid i.d.s. the problem we had was a break in our intelligence system. maybe these folks should have been question twice before they got on a flight. homeland security was in silence, and the issue of i.d.s, it is secondary to making sure that those people don't have explosives on them. we can have that idea anywhere in the world. and get on a flight. we have to make sure to coordinate intel across the world. and with our frenemies, so to
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speak, so my question in the last few moments that i have, sir, is how are we working to make sure, number one, that tsa is no longer siloed but is sharing that information. and number two, looking at the folks across the pond, across america, to make sure we have the best innovation. thank you. >> thanks very much for your comments. i couldn't agree more. when i would say is that in addition to the comments you made, tso officers, transportation security officers, they are the last line of defense. they have enormous responsibility. it's our job to give them the discretion, the procedures and technology so that they are successful and they are very important in their mission. these systems are built on layers of security. we don't rely on any single layer to ensure that some of this, gets on the plane will be getting on a plane. and mr. neffenger manchin from
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the beginning. in many ways, terrorists who present themselves for screening -- we have already had issues in other layers that should have picked that up before the person arrived. then going back to migrants, for a second, the non documented individuals who travel in the country, we have capture their biometrics when they cross the border. the one app does that. those biometrics are compared to our screening database in our secure flight systems. so even the biometrics, there is assurance that the person is not listed on any of our watchlists. as you mentioned, we do do the right screening level based on the information that we have any risk that the individual presents. the last thing i will mention is that those layers that you talk about, on 9/11, one of those layers now is a robust federal air marshal service. they are assigned to flights based on the risk of the flight. and they are a professional
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group of individuals. their mission is to prevent a terrorist attack in-flight. >> thank you very much. mister chairman, how much time do i have? or is my time up? >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> thank you mister chairman, i yield. >> the chair recognizes the gentleman from south carolina, mr. norman. >> thank you. administrator pekoske, did you say that when congressman guest put up the tsa website, that a photo can be voluntary, are you denying that? are you saying that doesn't exist? >> i am not denying it. i am saying i am unaware of any situation where that has occurred. additionally, they are biometric has already been checked with the checks that we would make in our secure flight system across the border. >> let me ask you this. how do you check biometrics when they cross illegally? when they don't do the screening process? walk me through how you check
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the biometrics if they crossed the border illegally. >> well, if someone presents at a screening checkpoint -- >> no, no, no. >> i am saying -- >> i am saying if they don't do the screening process, walk me through what they do to get them biometrics when there is no screening to, that they are illegal -- >> correct, so those individuals would generally not be allowed access to a screening checkpoint. the >> you are not answer my question. it's a simple question. if you come across, you don't have the biometrics, if they go to the airport, we have no documentation, what do you do? do you turn them away? if they these are people you have no information on. walk me through this screening process. americans need to know this. walk me through what you do. >> i'll walk you through quickly.
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whenever someone prevents themself in a screening checkpoint without identification, we have a process we go to try to verify that identification. depending on what that process shows us, the print on level of screening we provide that person, or if we're not satisfied the person should continue, then they are not allowed into the sterile area. >> i'm going to ask you this. i've been to the border. out of 120 seats were by those who had cardboard things across their neck, saying we don't speak english. show me which airport to get. on they were allowed to get on how do you explain that? >> we courtenay all those very closely with customs and border protection. my assumption based on the information you provided, is that all of those informations did cross the border in were
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registered there biometrics were reported we >> i don't know that, you assume that. >> our procedures require that. >> you have to be rate 100 percent of the time. the terrorist that made 9/11 happen a killed 3000 people. and has been said, they had identification, we have suicide bombers who have got sophisticated things saying they can put in their bodies to blow the airplane up including themselves, how do you screen against that? >> we do a very thorough screening of anything individual is carrying. including a path down,. >> how about if they swallow it or put it up one of their cavities? how does that work? >> we have a very thorough screening process. and for carry on bags that we are very certain.
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-- will not be carrying anything that could harm anybody on a flight. >> but they could put it in one of their body cavities. >> we have not seen that a cursor. >> okay. what i'm saying is, we have, an open border with known terrorist getting across. the ones we have not caught. and here we are, i haven't heard a peep out of tsa, because we're gonna have 1.5 to 2 million illegals that are coming into the country. some go through the screening. the terrorist are smart enough not to do it. you are saying you have 100 percent proof that you or you will deny them access on the airplane, to protect americans and those who have to go through the process, or you've got some magic way of finding out who they are, when you have no records. you have no knowledge, you don't have the biometrics. you're telling me now, that you have a full proof way to make
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sure that doesn't happen, that they don't get on the airplane, and all the sudden you're finding on a history that they haven't given before. because they haven't come through the screening process. >> yes sir, in one i'm telling you is, people that board aircraft, anywhere in this country, including the southwest border, are thoroughly screened, and we would not permit them on aircraft, if we had any concern, that they might present to prep threat to that aircraft are the passengers on board. >> but if you don't have any information on them how does that not present a concern. >> we have layers of security, sir and identity verification is one layer of security. >> oh recognize a gentleman from rhode island. thank you mister chairman, i want to thank you for convening this hearing. i want to begin by thanking you for the service to our nation, and i also want to begin to thank you for your work,
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specifically for your release of two pipeline directives in the wake of the pipeline incident. i am however concerned that the second of these directives, was not made public. i understand, the public security director may be rooted in existing tsa practice, like aviation security, i know you had that conversation yesterday. i understand that part of it. but knowing the specifics of it, any protocols would be highly useful to terrorists, groups who would otherwise be it difficult to identify vulnerabilities to enable a terrorism attack. however, cyber well, that actors don't need this to conduct intelligence surveillance to do damage to our critical infrastructure. they can do something from anywhere in the world.
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once more -- which is specific vulnerability, and timelines, called out an emergency directive, in my view, all tsa is doing by shrouding, in secrecy, is denying itself the benefit in the ability to improve these directives. for the feedback's of the security community. my question administer gator kasky, would you -- future cybersecurity directors of the tsa? >> thank you very much, and thank you for your time yesterday, i enjoyed very much and learned a great deal and talking with you as always. as i said yesterday, yes we, will we will take that and look at that. you raise some very good points. our goal here, is to provide as much information about what the
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right cybersecurity measures are. and to get more and more organizations, in my opposition, owners and operators of transportation systems in the country, to have stronger cyber security measures in place. i take your suggestion very seriously sir thank you. >> very good thank you. mr., casket also want to ask you about assuring compliance with tsa security directors. i understand pipeline owners must maintain documentation of their compliance with tsa regulation. i also know that tsa has self-reported security controls through inspection. during these inspections, our tsa inspectors conducting on network testing on the systems? >> sir right now they are not doing on network testing of systems, penetration testing, that is something that
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cybersecurity infrastructure agency, and tsa are working on. we think that's important as well. >> having inspectors an auditor's conducting, i think is crucial for evaluating posture, evaluating the architecture of the network is not enough. just because they covered the design to be -- does not automatically make that true. our network testing, i believe is critical to verify these kinds of data stations. in the absence of this testing, the tsa relies on self reporting, which i do not believe is sufficient. in my view the solution is with tsa to implement policy -- certified private sector company our system, that would have impartiality to ensure
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entities and here to tsa's regulations. so mr. pekoske has the authority over pipeline security for nearly 20 years, yet the first direct service issued in may. i realize this is early days, but with that in mind, will you commit to working with me and the rest of this committee, implementing an order to take care of my compliance for the tsa security director? >> yes sir i commit to working with you and i appreciate your expertise. >> thank you administrator's, should you require additional statutory budgets or budgetary report to implement, where you work with this committee to obtain that support? >> yes sir. >> very good, that's all i can ask. thank you very much mister chairman i give back. >> chair recognizes a young lady from iowa. >> hi thank you mister chair
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and ranking members as, well and thank you to all that providing testimony to us today. since its inception in 20, 12 tsa pre-check and expedited screening has been very popular among members of the traveling public, myself included. an administrator pekoske, as travel continues to recover, more more can tsa due to significantly increase that role in moving forward. >> thanks for your question, and preach enrollment is almost 11 million passengers. our enrollment rate is now back it's 2019, rates so there are now more people, basically resuming the practices in rolling in pre-check as in prepresidential. we are increasing our enrollment services operation, by adding two additional vendors, to preach enrollment. that should make pre check much more accessible to people, and much easier for them to register for that important program.
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i appreciate your interest in. it >> also, one of the things i've noticed when i fly in and out of various, airports sometimes it's more airports, sometimes it's very large ones, early in the morning early in the evening, that the pre-check lanes are not operational. so what specifically is tsa doing, your promoting enrollment and pre-check, but you also don't have the lanes open, even though it seems like there's more than adequate personnel that seems like you could have the pre-check lane open. is there a number of passengers that have to go through to the pre-check, claimed to be open, how is that determined? and why can't i always count on a pre-check lane being open? >> what we look at in terms of processing, is how long the wait is, for passengers, we measure that every single lane, in the country, every hour. our standard for project processing is five minutes or less. our protocol would be to open additional lanes, if we could not achieve that five minute
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wait time standard. the other thing that we've instituted in the airports they have a very small number of lanes, sometimes it's hard to dedicate a single lane to pre-check, is a process called blended screening, which means the passenger in front of, you might be a nine pre-check passenger, they will get the level of screening that that requires, the next person, yourself for example, as a pre-check passenger, within get pre-check screening. we're using that to provide passengers with the convenience of pre-check, and the speed to preach, i put whenever we see the wait time upon five minutes overall, that's the time to open up an additional lane,. >> i think the challenges that those individuals who have pre-check clearance, who have clear, typically are very efficient and how they package their materials, and people that aren't, that screening takes a lot of time, because the person in front of you, they have to take their liquid, south of take your laptop out,
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let's take their belts, their keys, their coins, etc, you understand the dilemma it poses, it's good to know that it's a five minute waiting period to keep track of that. in the future. and i'll let you know. lastly, apple recently announced, that it is partnering with the tsa, to have its customers use mobile driver licenses, when their phones are watches, as proof of identification. at certain airport checkpoints. to me this collaboration seems very exciting, i always worry about losing my drivers license or a put it away to quickly go through the screening process, so when should we expect to see this technology airport checkpoints? and it which states. and please explain the tsa's approach to incorporate this security and efficiency benefits, that digital identity provides at the checkpoint. >> yes ma'am. the digital identity of the mobile drivers, license very exciting initiative. we work with a cooperative research and development agreement with apple, the same
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opportunity available to non apple manufacturers as well. we expect to roll this out, at certain airports, and of course it requires the states, to also agree that their drivers license can be uploaded, in a digital format. there are several states that have already agreed to that. we anticipate that we will roll out the mobile drivers license capability, in select airports, beginning at the very end of this calendar year or early into calendar year 2022. it's right around the corner. >> thank you so much. for that and it as you said it's very exciting that will be coming in the forefront. i hope it gets to my airports, and i'll check with my. state thank you for that. thank you chair thompson i give back my time. >> chair recognizes young lady from new york. >> thank you very much mister, chairman and i think our ranking member. i think our panelists for their expert witness from this
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morning. my question, my first question is to the entire panel. in the 20 years since tsa formation, the agency has conducted a wide range of threats, which continue to evolve. in your view. what has emerged as the most prevalent challenges the tsa's mission, to its workforce, and to its resources? >> administrator per costly, let's start with you. >> thanks ma'am i appreciate that. with the respect to the threat the thing that said merge is the problem of domestic terrorist threat. which is different from foreign based or foreign inspired terrorist. it's required us to refocus -- impacts both the aviation specter and all the surface modes of transportation. there's a change in the threat
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and additionally it's not just physical any longer there's a physical threat and a cyber threat that's developed and we saw that with our directives with the pipeline industry following the colonial pipeline in tax. we are just based on the changes to the threat and the linkages that we have to the intelligence community to make sure we're staying head of where the threat is growing. we change our procedures and our technology, in that regard. i hope that's responsive to your question. >> what would you say that threat has presented to the workforce, is there a need for additional training and resources? specific to that training? >> the threats presented itself to the workforce and a number of ways, the key remedy we have for that, is to ensure that the workforce has the right tools to do the very important job that they have. some of the technologies that we have talked about this morning, the credential
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technology, the new x-ray system, the detection systems are very important to putting the right tools in the hands of our workforce. additionally, what's important as well, is to have a significant invisible presence, to deter any potential threat actors from acting out. this is particularly relevant in the case of domestic terrorists. >> would anyone else cared to respond? >> yes -- during my tenure, the execution of -- by however the disgruntled mentally help challenge individual who shot him in the back. into other téa. so's that's always been an issue of the mind of tso's and concerned that what happens,
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when somebody with that mindset and with a weapon, can simply walk into an airport before going into the security, and opened fire. that's something that is a challenge, because in working closely with the airport police, with law enforcement, in addition to other resources, it's one of the things that continues to be -- [inaudible] >> let me just add, i was on brussels airport on march 22nd 2016 when the airport attacks detonated their large suitcase bombs in the public area. i think the public areas of the airport are far more challenging than they used to be, and are clearly a potential target area, so we've done a great job of keeping people from keep getting into sterile airports in those public areas are great concern. as people can rapidly rattle
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collides because of the ability to find like-minded ideological individuals on the internet, and social media, it becomes much more challenging to stay ahead of that. >> in keeping that, i guess administrator pekoske, the psa has had to work with other agencies across the federal government, throughout the pandemic. their collaboration's with other federal agencies -- are there areas in which tsa still needs to improve their efforts? >> i think our inter agency cordery shun efforts are outstanding. we have strong relationships across the board with all of our inter agency partners. i think the area of focus for, us and it's not that the relationships need improvement, it's just that the focus is going to be even more so, on the surface transportation systems, and the modes of
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surface transportation safety that exist in the department of transportation, the relationships i think a very strong and very important to us. >> thank, you i give it back mister chairman. thank you gentlemen. >> chair recognizes a gentleman from michigan. for five minutes, mr. meyer. >> thank you mister chairman, and thank you to our witnesses for joining us here today. i appreciate this timely and important look back on the 20th anniversary. and the founding of the transportation security administration, and our differing approach to travel security in airport security. but not limited to that. that touches upon my first question for the administrator, the tsa reinforces have been focused on commercial aviation, your agency also has responsibility for the security of mass transit. for freight rail, elements of highway infrastructure, and other critical transportation sectors, the ransomware attack on the colonial pipeline earlier this year, was the
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first opportunity for many us to learn the tsa also had responsibility for pipeline security. i guess my question to mr. administrator is, how is the tsa ensuring that these are receiving adequate attention and resources? are there any components of the broad mission apart from airport security that have been historically under funded? or neglected? either by congress or by dhs leadership? >> the way we assess resource allocation within the agency, and this affects our allocation within the current budget, ear and also our budget request for the future years, is looking at the risks and how the risk is changing. this is informed by intelligence information, it's formed by information we receive from our government partners, and our private sector partners across the board, we assessed risks as the risk changes, we put into mitigation measures, that might require a redirection of funds. we've also organizationally to
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make sure to your point, that surface transportation is achieving their a priority. thanks to the work of this committee, and our 2018 reauthorization, we have established a separate system as administrative position and, staffers surface transportation security. and have a similar staff in our policy operations, for surface transportation policy has its own organization, surface transportation operations is also a clearly identified organization. finally we've established mutual networks, where we have a leader, a member of senior executive services in five regions around the country, all aligned with the femur regions. that oversees surface transportation security in the interaction with those operators, on a regional basis. as available for them hundreds of inspectors to be able to do the important work we do. >> i appreciate that answer mr. administrator. i quickly want to follow up. it's been two decades since the admissions were put under tsa,
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during that, close to two decades, close to during the reorganization in early 2000, at this point looking back to 15 to 20 years an operation, do you think that any of these emissions should be reassigned to other components, or in the broader executive branch? >> no sir i do not. i think the missions that are signed, are exactly the right ones. i think we have demonstrated that over the course of 20 years. i would just highlight, with respect to the colonial pipeline, because of the authorities, congress has provided a new law. and reinforcement reauthorization. we were able to move very quickly and putting measures into place, to mitigate any future affects on critical pipeline systems. i think the missions that we have, is exactly right, for tsa. and it's upon us of course to make sure we coordinate robustly, with the prior question. with our inner agency, partners not just at the federal level, but possibly with service transportation systems at the state and local levels. >> and that energy agency
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partner point, can you give a better or a little bit of an additional description on how they would collaborate, particularly with the intelligence community, but also with the private sector and security? and vetting procedures and intelligence sharing. what's type of coordination problems, persist, and what is tsa doing to address those challenges? >> it's quite best that i just briefly describe how, when we see a threat screen developing, how we change our procedures, how we might change some of the requirements placed on the private sector, or other public owners and operators of the, systems and especially the way we do that is to bring the chief security officers of those organizations, in, provide them and intelligence brief so they're looking at the intelligence that we see, and then collaborate closely with them. to achieve the security outcomes that we know we have to achieve. this can happen fast. we've been very successful in doing, this it can happen fast and would it not results in is
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a private sector, or a local government partner, who understands the threat, and understands the rationale for the measures we put into place. and for the private sector operators, they can also offer different ways of accomplishing the security outcome we want to accomplish. sometimes their measures are actually more effective, because they know their systems better than we do at times. oftentimes they require less cost, from my perspective, as long as we can achieve the desired security outcome, we will generally approve, those what we call alternative measures. >> thank, you and thank you mister chairman, i give it back. >> chair recognizes, a young lady from nevada. >> thank you mister chairman. i'd like to ask the administrator, about the new opening of the international travel markets, i represent las vegas we welcome a lot of international travelers, and we
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expect that number to increase. so especially good to hear that the administration lifted that restriction on a number of places, around the world. it's time these new travelers are becoming american travelers are going out again, they have a need to go on travel after a year and a half of being locked down. we're going to see a lot more people in the air. we've seen that the aviation infrastructure wasn't from there to deal with, so many at one time. it's kind of like the problem after 9/11. i wonder, how tsa is preparing to welcome all of these new travelers, especially the international ones. and what resources you might need, something we might be able to do to help us accommodate them. we know that travel because the minute you leave the house. so your airport experience is a part of how you remember the
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trip, of going incoming. could you address that for us? >> and happy to address that, one of the thing that's very important for us is that in working with the carriers, we project what we think air travel will be for the coming year, i know that's hard to do sometimes. the further out we go, but we've been very successful in identifying a window of the minimum in the maximum number of passengers, except for the covid years, but certainly we were in fact very close to our estimates, for this past summer. what that does is it drives the requirement of the staffing levels of airports around the country. and what's important here, is that because of the training, that is necessary to certify one of our officers in the important job they have at the checkpoints, we really need to hire people, a good four to five months ahead of when the passenger need will be. we're in the process now of really looking at next summer's travel projections. and showing that we bring on an
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adequate number of transportation security officers, to handle that demand. finally, we worked very closely with the airports, like your airport in las vegas. to do whatever we can to make sure that we have the right number of lanes. whenever an airport wants to add an additional lane, down to their screening checkpoint, we welcome that every single time. and we will staff those lane. so that we can manage the flows during the peak periods. as you know there are certain times during the, day and a lot of flights on those tend to be very challenging for everybody to get through, or not just screening, but to get through ticketing and the gate. >> monday morning after rioters, can you have a lot of people going through that airport. thank you. i'm glad to hear that. another question related to international travelers, is their ability to read the signs. i know if i'm in china in the airport and i can't read the signs, i'm going to be lost. we have a lot of international
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travelers, as well as in las vegas is an international city in terms of its residents. our community, and thank you mister chairman for helping for, this as to traveling amp, that was to make sure that all this signage in several different languages, as well as acceptable for people who are mentally or hearing impaired. is tsa making any progress along those? lines even though the bill did not pass? >> yes, ma'am in fact at las vegas airport, the las vegas airport authority has been kind enough to provide an entire checkpoint, to tsa, to check out our newest technologies, and the benefit of this arrangement in las vegas, is that we can actually divert passengers, to this checkpoint, and have actual passengers go through some of our change processes are new technology, so we can assess how it actually works in a real life situation. one of the things we look at in terms of signage, our
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electronic signs. that can be changed to provide information indifferent languages. and oftentimes we can make a pretty good guess it would languages would need to be accommodated, in a given airport. given where the flakes are flying off are coming from. a lot of work is being done on the, and to provide as much ease of information as possible for passengers. >> that's great. i know that there's an integration checkpoint, you've been using some uv screening as well, to clean luggage places. is that working out, have you been able to translate some of the other things you discover there to other airports? >> yes we're still testing the uv technology, especially when the bins get returned in automatic screening lamps. these are 70 or 80 foot long lanes that allow multiple people to divest, to put their stuff in a bin at the same time, so that improves flow. it also make sure that when we
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want to search a bag, that is not accessible to that passenger so a passenger can't reach him pull a bag that we know we need to search. and then there's plenty of room for the passenger to re-compose, after the screening process is done. the idea is that those bins, as they travel back to the front of the, lane would be uv scanned, and that would reduce the virus load, in those bins. so far testing shows it works pretty well. we're testing different times to dwell, and also the brightness of the late. if this continues to proceed and i would expect to have that as an option inner systems across the nation. >> i know you have where you can scan your own i.d., thank you mister chairman. it's good news. >> we recognize a gentleman from georgia. >> thank you chairman thompson i appreciate this opportunity.
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and this hearing. this question would be for administrator pekoske. earlier this year i joined some of my colleagues on a trip in april to witness the craziness in the country that we are experiencing a nurse southern border. and our way back, there were multiple illegal migrants who had been apprehended between 24 and 72 hours prior to carefully. we also know, we were told that there were several individuals, on the non terrorist database that had been apprehended at the border. with such a quick turnaround time in processing migrants, who illegally crossed, that is 24 to 72 hours, how is tsa ensuring that the safety and security of domestic transportation systems -- many have not received a medical assessment and what concerns me greatly, is, how do we know whether these people
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have a criminal record? in their home country. what information are you relying on, to properly vet migrant passengers? i mean you're doing it within 24 to 72 hours. so, how are you doing that? >> the vetting that we provide, is done electronically. so the time is not a critical factor here. essentially what we do is we take the biographical biometric information, and compare to watchlist that we hold in the u.s. government. to ensure that nobody who is a known or suspected terrorist, is his mid it into the airport, without either very thorough screening, or they might be in a category where they're not able to fly. there are different levels that we assess. it's based on bio graphic biometric information, we may not have information on their criminal history, in their home country. but we do have the biometric
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information to compare to our watchlist. >> okay. so. i mean i heard you in previous testimony talk about enhanced screening in multiple layers. and i think you said, you do whatever you can, but if a person doesn't actually have ideas, and their name is joe. and they tell you that their name is sam, am i correct that prior to getting on these plates, that if they don't have i.d., you actually create a government i.d. for them? is that right? or is that not right. >> no sir that's not right. we make an assessment, passenger to passenger, as to whether we think a passenger, should be permitted into the sterility of an airport or an aircraft. it's a very individualistic look. and i'm very confident that we do that carefully and successfully. for every passenger that boards an aircraft. >> every american that flies, has to have a photo i.d.. that actually verifies who they
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are. i get where you're telling me then is an illegal migrant, does not have to have a photo i.d.. and we don't necessarily know who they are. you might scream them to make sure they don't have knives or whatever, something illegal in the airplane. but we don't know if there are criminal coming into this country that has ill in tenth. something beyond the airport itself. or not. is that we are telling me? but you don't know that? >> this goes back to our multiple layers of security. i'll tell you what we do know. we do know that any person who's permitted into the stereo portion of the airport, or boards an aircraft, has been properly screened, so that they do not pose a risk to the aircraft, or to other people in and sterile area. i can guarantee you of that. >> okay, all right. so it's okay for tsa to allow people on an aircraft without
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an actual government issued i.d.. and what authority do you allow that? >> we have to have one. >> yes sir and i have authority as the administrator, to allow that, and there are passengers that are american citizens. that occasionally show up and screening checkpoints that do not have their i.d. with them. and again, we have a verification process that we used, to see if we can verify their identity, we make a judgment at the, time based on criteria we have at the agency. and we ensure that all passengers are thoroughly screened before they board an aircraft. >> okay. all right. let me follow up with you on this. tsa requires anyone traveling from other countries, to provide a confirms negative covid-19 test, within 72 hours, prior to their entering the u.s.. is this same standard being applied to illegal migrants as
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well? >> to my knowledge it's not being applied to illegal migrants. that's a center for decision. >> okay, but yet you enforce it right? >> customs and border protection and tsa enforcement yes or. >> okay all right. okay. >> thank you i yield back. >> chair recognizes young lady from [inaudible] . >> thank you mister chairman, and thank you to each of our witnesses, for this very informative discussion that we're having. let me associate myself with your comments in the ranking member and every member, who has spoken out on behalf of the compensate shun and the recognition of the significance of the frontline workers here. our tso's. and that they should have predictability, a pathway for career. this would help us with the
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load out issues. i have, i think about the unique question, in the 21st century, you may not need a terrorist aboard a plane to hijack it. as planes, trains, subways, and buses become increasingly automated, we need to be prepared for what hijackers inevitably, will launch a cyber attack against the operational or navigation systems, of the transportation target. as seen in ransomware attacks, our adversaries consider no target off limits. administrator, i'd like to speak to you about this. how does tsa work with the air agent partners, to prevent mel where two -- of the planes, trains, subways, buses, etc. are you in conversations with regulators, to ensure this threat is addressed? and that tsa plays a
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significant role in mitigating it? mr. pekoske, please. >> thank you we are very close coordination, for sure. and with all of the modes, and the department of transportation, whether it's faa, federal railroads etc. that coordination is very good. additionally it's important that we coordinate closely with the owners and operators of those systems. and also, to bring on cyber security expertise within tsa. and to ensure we have good strong connections, to be able to benefit from their expertise overall. i think we've made a lot of progress on cybersecurity already. i recognize, and i think you would agree that a lot more needs to be done. another key element, just to quickly mention, is we are offering very specific briefings to the ceos, of these
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organizations, so that they understand the threat that we, see and the urgency of getting ahead. >> thank you mr. pekoske, i also know there were advisory issues by you all, after them hour attack, on the pipeline, i'm wondering if you are considering, the same kinds of oversight and accountability, from these other transportation systems. the airplanes, the buses, the subways, the trains, i think that these are reasonable targets. and i don't know if you are engaged in those discussions, i don't know if you have enough resources to be able to address this area. i'd like to have your response to that, so that we could be as helpful as possible. >> yes ma'am we are engaged with those owners and operators, and private sector companies. there's been a very good dialogue to date. we will of course base our actions, based on the wrist
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that we see, the risk to one element of surface, might not be the risk to another, or within the pipeline sector. there are certain pipeline owners and operators that we felt were at greater risk than others. and the dialogue has been very robust, it will continue to support the 60-day cybersecurity spread, that the secretary is put into place, for the transportation sector. it began on the first of, september and runs through october. it's been an awful lot of effort on, that i think we made some very good progress. >> thank you mister chairman, i yield it back. >> thank you very much, chair recognizes gentleman from florida. >> thank you very much mister chairman. i was listening to testimony, i had a question but i'm going to change my line of questioning. mr. pekoske, in order for somebody to get to the united states, what do they need to
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show in terms of covid? to they need to show they are vaccinated, too they need to show they have a negative test, coming from you, whether they need to show? >> the new procedures will come into place very shortly, where they will need to show that they are vaccinated and have a test, within a certain number of hours prior to flight. >> somebody coming from canada. what did they need to? show >> the same. sure >> somebody crossing the border, from the south, which they need to show? >> they don't need to show the same things coming from the southwest border. this is also based on advice we received from the centers for disease control. >> so the center for disease control seems to think that somehow, the virus somehow is not contagious coming from europe in from canada, that it is from the southern border, which kind of blows up the whole argument about following the science, doesn't it? >> i'm not a medical expert.
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>> so that's not for you. that's my comment. this stuff about following the science is a bunch of hooey, if we tell canadians they have to be vaccinated in show a proof of negative test. we do the same thing with europeans. and we do nothing for people crossing the southern border. so this whole thing about the cdc following the science, it really doesn't, it follows political silence. but not really the science. and so it's been very illuminating for these today's testimony. one thing i would like to add, one thing that i do support, is the work that our tsa agents are doing, with all these different kinds of guidance they're getting from the cdc and everybody else. the work that they do on the ground, and i would hope sir that you find a way, to increase the pay for those doing the right work of the tsa
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does, and i know i proposed that during our markup, to increase the pay, unfortunately the majority voted it down, so what's steps are you taking, to increase the pay and benefits of those people that are on the ground doing this great work? >> i couldn't agree with you more, i think it's imperative that we increased the pay, for anyone in tsa, especially frontline workforce. where there's a pay discrepancy between what they get paid in with their counterparts in the rest of the government would get paid. they have a very difficult job to do, significant responsibility on their shoulders, and very arduous work hours as well, they're showing up at 3:00 in the morning in many airports to begin to open the screening process. my top priority, is to continue to improve, pay but i want to improve it, and i know the chairman agrees with this 100 percent, as substantially as we can, to get that equity in the system, and to properly compensate people going forward. i would note that we have made
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attempts, and we have made some progress increasing, pay but it's not been enough. it's really important for us, we spend a lot of money, with people that commit to tsa, and find and identify for us the number one reason they leave, is because of the pay it's very expensive to recruit and retain. people without adequate pay structures. i'm 100 percent supportive. that will work very very hard to make sure we get across the finish line. >> thank you very much administrator. and i yield my time. them are working very hard to make sure we get across the finish line. >> thank you mr. administrator i yield my time. >> thank you so much mr. chairman. thank you to the witnesses with this extremely important issue. first of all associate myself with my colleagues to take the time to thank the tso for the
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extraordinary job that they do every day. we all travel a lot and it is important that we see them and that we all have come a long way and of preparation. the interagency cooperation. so you said something to the effect you find little comfort in the fact we have not been attacked. in 20 years. that we are not attacked that you mentioned that and you felt there was more work to do to establish can you talk more
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about that quick. >> the reference to where we were on 9/11 and then 20 years later. i was only endorsing as a constant as well as the administrator to be conscious of and focused of continuing that linkage between the intelligence community at large in the information from within the intelligence community that can be actionable for tsa and then to focus on. we don't assume that we are there we don't assume you will be there in the future. but it's an element of constant focus we always have
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a table with the committee discussion with regard to responsibility and just to take for granted if we get there we will stay there it is an evolutionary challenge just as we heard with the comments of afghanistan if that is an opportunity to be concerned we should focus on that and a continuing manner going into the future thank you for your thoughts on that. >> thank you for your response. since 9/11 some have the operation to contribute to the work of the intelligence community. >> thank you congresswoman and testifying from the university of bethesda and that cycle
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that is inherent in what you think of and i was impressed and then how informed tsa was as it relates to transportation issues and with that reliance on risk-based security and you can't just do things. you cannot just do things in a vacuum. >> but bombers are hijackers whatever it may be. that's the way it starts off. and then to have that start and based on the intelligence.
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>> i cannot see the clock. do i have time for one more question? administrator, very quickly we know on the front line the tso of law enforcement and i think we continue to build a more functional and relation affective relationship can you talk about the information sharing is actually critical to the safety and security of everybody in the airport. and orderly and on —- orlando is still included in the law enforcement supreme court even more so because we see more disturbances in flight and in the checkpoint and local law enforcement is right there to
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make sure our officers are fully protected and the situation is the escalated as quickly as it can be but we talked about the public securities importance and what law enforcement presence to be augmented by our own viper teams is important to let people know that law enforcement is there and if every on —- anyone has a situation they can address it so i'm very proud of our partnership and a salute all law enforcement officers particularly this week for their service to our country and to our officers. >> i yield back. thank you. >> the chair recognizes the gentle lady from new york. >> thank you mr. chairman and the ranking member both of my a questions or for the administrator. one thing i submitted to the record with a report hereby a
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scorecard conducted on the pipeline security the report notes while the security cybersecurity posture as a whole on the fortune 500 there is a wide variance in the industry i will submit this report for the record and send it with some questions i you can look through it because i'm sure you haven't seen the report yet. >> without objection. >> i would be happy to look at and provide some reaction. thank you. >> so the bolt the tsa funding and employees are focused on commercial aviation but there is a responsibility of air cargo generation highway infrastructure so does tsa have the appropriate funding
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dedicated to working on pipeline security and if not what additional resources or support do you need from congress to fulfill this responsibility? >> we increase the size of the staff significantly over the past couple years and in those security mode we are making progress and we have added 54 cyberprofessionals with that critical cybersecurity expertise and with that aviation those are dedicated and rest assured in the budget request stick terrace becoming more prominent and then to do everything we can for the owners operators of those
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systems is as robust as possible. >> you mentioned cybersecurity most of that comes from overseas is that something you are seeing? and there has been 100 percent compliance with the first security directive mr. has some deadlines and then later
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into 2022 but so far the dialogue we have had and we are on a very good path and as we mentioned and then to with those companies to make sure they are better protected from cyberattacks. >> and it was very regular. and we have regular opportunities to engage to make sure we are all on track to get the directors fully implemented and other ways we might provide cybersecurity overall. additionally any ceo knows if
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they want to call and talk to me that they are privileged to do and i'm happy to have those conversations. and with that equivalent level of service that something me are very focused on. and with pre- check enrollment. is that we are well prepared. >> if you give me a lot more detail that would be great. >> .
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>> tsa administrator if i go to the airport today and did not have photo id it is to recognize fly. is that correct? >> isn't it true on the forgot your id ?-question-mark it talks about the procedures you may have to go through if you don't have an id. >> it happens every single day across our system. i just want to clarify that because there is not a different standard and then to be denied a flight if you are a migrant and you have other paperwork you are allowed to board. and to use witness firsthand what he had migrants and then
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to be registered at the border and it is a very thorough process. thank you for the work the men and women are doing to ensure. my two sisters are flight attendants to make sure we're taking care of the american people. i want to talk about unruly passengers. with one airline and then to be treated similarly by other carriers and then in.
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>> thank you sisters for the very important work that they do that is a very typical job and it has become more difficult. i appreciate the work of all the attendants in the flight deck crew do. and with the no-fly list. when they refuse with the future fight on the carrier? the standards and across the system i personally do not see a role for tsa with private
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sector carrier and how to coordinate and how they share information but i'm concerned about the standards no-fly means something different that there is a connection with terrorism when you say no-fly in tsa but i know they will continue to work on this collaboration. >> thank you for that. i'm not sure i completely agree with the safety issue does anybody else want to comment on this proposal? >> hearing nine i will move on to the next question between
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2020 and 2021 there were physical assault on tso's and 3600 with those agents and since last week one passenger choked a flight attendant and attempt to storm the cockpit. news reports and in contrast with those in-flight disturbances only in 2019 what additional actions can tsa take and to fight back with unruly passengers? it makes the job of the tso ever more difficult when you are subject to an assault. verbal assaults are bad enough but physical cross a different threshold. we have seen an increase of physical assault at the checkpoints and physical assault and verbal assault for
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invite instances. and with that civil penalty action that may or may not result it depends on what the investigation shows. >> so this is an area of significant concern for us. and to build on what the congresswoman had raised in a checkpoint whenever there is a disturbance law enforcement with the state and local charge as well. so basically it's us doing and
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then to hold them accountable for their actions and then to include the state and local partners in that operation. >> i yield back. >> the gentle man from kansas. >> thank you mr. chairman. and to ask with those detection systems and with those international airports are already using better system so talk to me about this. >> and the international airports are using better systems across the board our goal is to make sure we are the gold standard and that is
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a hardware upgrade to improve the detectability so the symptoms are better. >> and we will continue to upgrade or install technology. and to make some very good progress. it is in our interest that we all have as close of the standard of that we have and
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as the linchpin so how can we better incorporate biometrics into the process such as the cat machines where you put your drivers license and that tsa officer in into the biometrics and then to have the 121 match so when you insert your drivers license or passport the credentialed authentication technology in the future with the image on the credential. and those those digital images together and that capability is significant and the
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important thing is 121 match is not a gallery of images and once the passenger removes their credential all of that is you raised they don't retain any of that information. we have no further use. >> is not available to the tsa pre- check? and with those several airports across the country and then the process and then they say i want to use that new technology but those have already opted in.
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so that's a place you are going to start? >> and then to have that data so what i was going to say as we employee technology we put it first in pre- check. >> is the taste of hiring keeping up quick. >> keeping up with attrition but i am concerned about hiring overall and i think everybody in the aviation industry is concerned about hiring overall that's one of the reasons why they are so important because without a predictable level of pay it is harder and harder to recruit people into the federal government and it's also harder to retain people in service. so to me vastly improve the
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ability to retain and it's a fundamental thing to do. >> the gentle man yields back but what i would like to do to wrap things up is to give the witnesses an opportunity to look for the next 20 years at tsa and what kind of thoughts so i will start off with you and bring it forward. >> thank you mr. chairman i
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think with regard to the adequacy to serve the inventory of concerns and the administrators inventory and to make certain there is an effort hearing that conversation among members and tsa employees as well that my concern for the future is just to be consistent with what has been our concerns over a pretty successful window of 20 years. as i indicated in my original testimony i take comfort it's been over 20 years i just want to make sure we have focus and oversight and adequate attention that continues to be
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vigilant going forward so my concern would just to be to take stock of what happened in afghanistan and see that threat index and how we need to be compensated for it going forward. so my notion is that the committee and the administrator looking into the next 20 years is the same vigilance that has proven successful in traveling safely and securely for the past 20 years to make sure the constancy of focus is never let down. >> i think i would summarize my perspective we have some great testimony those agencies
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of the private sector so i think that personnel investment is critical to helping the workforce and in policies relates to making sure the administrator or future administrators have the authority to make sure they can take divisive action in can do that in the interagency arena and then to be recognized for that authority and that signed technology that hamper our efforts to provide world-class security in a way that most americans to travel expect and to see what the world looks to for
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leadership through international associations and others what is he was doing and how are we setting trends to make sure they are the world's best security in the most efficient way as the continued maturation over the next 20 years. >> thank you mr. chairman and i have course word echo what my colleagues have said and with respect to workforce as a sediment opening statement and say that after 34 years there have been a number of things with that affect already so
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with respect to technology you never have a perfect system with that technology and then with the private sector more effectively and to get requirements out to allow the private sector to build the technologies that we need with the pests possibility so the private sector can refresh faster with respect to budgets and so forth and then to transform the way we bring technology to operations on a daily basis. it is first and foremost in the intelligence agency. so i went echo the need to
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maintain that connection that tells us rapidly what we need to foresee for the future. so thank you for the support of the committee that they were closely together and i appreciate the oversight and on that side to say you appreciate congressional oversight that this is about making sure the agency does the right thing and you collectively asked the right questions the right kinds of issues and in my experience you are always very supportive of the work of the agency. thank you. >> thank you mr. chairman i agree with all predecessors have said. one is intel-based and risk-based operations going
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forward looking at tsa as peter has just mentioned we need to ensure we best leverage the resources of the government overall of the intelligence community and to contribute to the development of intelligence in the united states and is key going forward. second there will be increased investment in the service transportation and security is imperative the threat is changing and we just need to do this. but i predict that will be a continuous evolution over the course of the next several years. rather than replace all technology and what we need to have a process for technology so we are always at the leading edge you need someone to look at the system to try to assess can detect because they just want know what technology they might
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encounter when they go to that process where to the baggage. and with very strong partnerships and is a significant key to our country success to provide transportation security. i would submit also to the success globally. to have a more specialized workforce so that would become a more clear career path with greater diversity we have one of the most diverse workforce in the federal government at the entry level as the frontlines of the organization
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checkpoints you mentioned that is not the case that you go to the middle and upper levels and we need to fix that properly the action community with the diversity and inclusion reports reports directly from me to make sure we have a constant effort in this regard going forward and i would conclude by thanking you as the chairman. we have no people for a good number of years the two of you and the entire committee have been entire sleeve supportive of tsa holding us accountable but you are always there with a solution to help us along. and then one of the questions
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so then you have all of the authorities you need to do your job. and then to come back then to the best of our abilities. and then the future training camp for future tsa administrators who never acknowledge if you have all of the authority that you need. so let me assure you that we have excellent administrator so absolutely so how can we
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expedite? in the technology so that somehow we passed legislation that we need to ramp it up. so let me again the current administrator for the testimony and our members for that question we have additional questions for the witnesses and it expeditiously in writing to the questions. do you have a closing comment?
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>> yes. i appreciate that mr. chairman. just observing the back-and-forth today. there is no gotcha questions we are just trying to make sure we do the proper oversight they give you the tools you need to do your job. absent of theatrics we did a good job. were trying to find it when it tsa how proud we are of that nonresident aliens. so is not the politics of the last six months and then for
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this hearing to reflect is a special policy right now. i want the administrator to reflect that going forward. so that she remains the numbers the record will remain open for ten
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