H.R. 2951 (107th): Aviation Security Act

107th Congress, 2001–2002. Text as of Sep 25, 2001 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

HR 2951 IH

107th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2951

To improve aviation security, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

September 25, 2001

Mr. GANSKE (for himself, Mr. ANDREWS, Mr. LEACH, Mr. DINGELL, Mr. GRAHAM, Mr. SHAYS, Mr. NORWOOD, Mr. SMITH of New Jersey, and Mr. TOM DAVIS of Virginia) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure


A BILL

To improve aviation security, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ‘Aviation Security Act’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds the following:

      (1) The safety and security of the civil air transportation system is critical to the United States’ security and its national defense.

      (2) A safe and secure United States civil air transportation system is essential to the basic freedom of Americans to move in intrastate, interstate, and international transportation.

      (3) The terrorist hijackings and crashes of passenger aircraft on September 11, 2001, converting civil aircraft into guided bombs for strikes against civilian and military targets requires the United States to change fundamentally the way it approaches the task of ensuring the safety and security of the civil air transportation system.

      (4) The existing fragmentation of responsibility for that safety and security among government agencies and between government and nongovernment entities is inefficient and unacceptable in light of the hijackings and crashes on September 11th.

      (5) The General Accounting Office, as well as other independent investigators, have recommended that security functions and security personnel at United States airports should become a Federal government responsibility.

      (6) Although the number of Federal air marshals is classified, their presence on both international and domestic flights would have a deterrent effect on hijacking and would further bolster public confidence in the safety of air travel.

      (7) The effectiveness of existing security measures, including employee background checks and passenger profiling, is impaired because of the inaccessibility of, or the failure to share information among, data bases maintained by different Federal and international agencies for criminal behavior or pertinent intelligence information.

SEC. 3. DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR FOR AVIATION SECURITY.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Section 106 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--

      (1) by striking the second sentence of subsection (b) and inserting ‘The Administration has 2 Deputy Administrators: (1) A Deputy Administrator for Administration; and (2) A Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security.’; and

      (2) by striking subsection (i) and inserting the following:

    ‘(i) Functions of Deputy Administrators-

      ‘(1) DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR FOR ADMINISTRATION- The Deputy Administrator for Administration shall carry out duties and power prescribed by the Administrator. The Deputy Administrator for Administration acts for the Administrator when the Administrator is absent or unable to serve, or when the office of Administrator is vacant.

      ‘(2) Deputy administrator for aviation security-

        ‘(A) IN GENERAL- The Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security--

          ‘(i) is responsible for hiring and training employees engaged in providing aviation-related security at all United States airports and air navigation facilities involved in interstate air transportation or intrastate air transportation by civil aircraft;

          ‘(ii) is responsible for day-to-day aviation-related security operations for such transportation; and

          ‘(iii) shall actively cooperate and coordinate with other Federal agencies with responsibilities for national security and criminal justice enforcement activities that are related to aviation security through the Aviation Security Coordination Council.’.

    (b) Conforming Amendments-

      (1) Section 106 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--

        (A) by striking ‘The Deputy’ in subsection (d)(1) and inserting ‘Each Deputy’;

        (B) by striking the first sentence of subsection (d)(1) and inserting ‘Each Deputy Administrator must be a citizen of the United States. The Deputy Administrator for Administration must have experience in a field directly related to aviation. The Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security must have experience in a field directly related to law enforcement, national security, or intelligence.’;

        (C) by inserting ‘for Administration’ after ‘Deputy Administrator’ in the third sentence of subsection (d)(1);

        (D) by striking ‘The Deputy’ in subsection (d)(2) and inserting ‘Such a Deputy’;

        (E) by striking ‘the Deputy’ in subsection (d)(3) and inserting ‘a Deputy’; and

        (F) by striking ‘the Deputy’ in subsection (e) and inserting ‘a Deputy’.

      (2) Section 44932 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--

        (A) by striking subsection (a) and inserting the following:

    ‘(a) ORGANIZATION- The Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security reports directly to the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration and is subject to the authority of the Administrator.’;

        (B) by striking ‘Assistant’ in subsection (b) and inserting ‘Deputy’;

        (C) by striking ‘title;’ in subsection (b)(1) and inserting ‘title and individuals authorized to carry firearms and make arrests under section 44903(d);’;

        (D) by striking ‘Assistant’ in subsection (c) and inserting ‘Deputy’; and

        (E) by striking ‘x-ray’ in subsection (c)(4) and inserting ‘screening’.

      (3) Chapter 449 of title 49, United States Code, is amended--

        (A) by striking the section heading for section 44932 and inserting the following:

‘ 44932. Deputy Administrator for Civil Aviation Security’;

        and

        (B) by striking the item relating to that section in the chapter analysis for that chapter and inserting the following:

      ‘44932. Deputy Administrator for Civil Aviation Security.’.

    (c) TRANSITION- Until the Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security in the Federal Aviation Administration is appointed by the President, the functions of the Deputy Administrator shall be carried out by the Assistant Administrator for Aviation Security.

SEC. 4. AVIATION SECURITY COORDINATION COUNCIL.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Chapter 449 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

‘SUBCHAPTER III--AVIATION SECURITY COORDINATION COUNCIL

‘ 44951. Aviation Security Coordination Council

    ‘(a) IN GENERAL- There is established an Aviation Security Coordination Council.

    ‘(b) FUNCTION- The Council shall coordinate intelligence, security, and criminal enforcement activities affecting the safety and security of aviation at all United States airports and air navigation facilities involved in interstate air transportation or intrastate air transportation by public aircraft.

    ‘(c) MEMBERSHIP- The members of the Council are as follows:

      ‘(1) The Deputy Administrator for Aviation Security in the Federal Aviation Agency.

      ‘(2) A senior representative of equivalent rank with security-related responsibilities from--

        ‘(A) the Department of Justice, designated by the Attorney General;

        ‘(B) the Department of Defense, designated by the Secretary of Defense;

        ‘(C) the Central Intelligence Agency, designated by the Director of Central Intelligence; and

        ‘(D) any other Federal agency the participation of which is determined by the Deputy Administrator to be appropriate, designated by the head of that agency.’.

    (b) CONFORMING AMENDMENT- The chapter analysis for chapter 449 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

‘SUBCHAPTER III--AVIATION SECURITY COORDINATION COUNCIL

      ‘Sec. 44951. Aviation Security Coordination Council.’.

SEC. 5. IMPROVED FLIGHT DECK INTEGRITY MEASURES.

    (a) IN GENERAL- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Agency shall, as soon as possible after the date of enactment of this Act, issue an order (without regard to the provisions of chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code)--

      (1) prohibiting access to the flight deck of commercial aircraft engaged in interstate or intrastate transportation while the aircraft is so engaged by any person other than a member of the flight deck crew;

      (2) requiring the strengthening of the flight deck door and locks on any such aircraft operating under part 121 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, that has a door in a bulkhead between the flight deck and the passenger area to prevent them being forced open from inside the aircraft;

      (3) requiring that such flight deck doors remain locked while any such aircraft is in flight except when necessary to permit the flight deck crew access and egress; and

      (4) prohibit the possession of a key to any such flight deck door by any member of the flight crew who is not assigned to the flight deck.

    (b) COMMUTER AIRCRAFT- The Administrator shall investigate means of securing the flight deck of aircraft operating under the authority of part 135 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, that are engaged in interstate or intrastate air transportation that do not have a fixed door with a lock between the passenger compartment and the flight deck and issue such an order as the Secretary deems

appropriate (without regard to the provisions of chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code) to ensure the inaccessibility, to the greatest extent feasible, of the flight deck while the aircraft is so engaged.

SEC. 6. DEPLOYMENT OF FEDERAL AIR MARSHALS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Within 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, under the authority provided by section 44903(d) of title 49, United States Code, shall--

      (1) provide for random deployment of Federal air marshals on domestic commercial air passenger flights in the United States, and all international flights on American carriers into or out of the United States;

      (2) provide for appropriate background and fitness checks for candidates for appointment as Federal air marshals;

      (3) provide for appropriate training, supervision, and equipment of Federal air marshals; and

      (4) require commercial air carriers to provide seating for a Federal air marshal on any selected air passenger flight without regard to the availability of seats on that flight.

    (b) INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS- The Administrator shall work with appropriate aeronautic authorities of foreign governments under section 44907 of title 49, United States Code, to address security concerns on international flights.

    (c) INTERIM MEASURES- Until the Administrator can fully implement subsection (a), the Administrator shall, after consultation with the heads of other Federal agencies and departments, use personnel from those agencies and departments, on a reimbursable or nonreimbursable basis, to provide air marshal service on domestic and international flights.

    (d) REPORT- No later than 18 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit a report to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives setting forth--

      (1) an assessment of the effectiveness of the program;

      (2) the Administrator’s recommendation as to whether the program should be continued; and

      (3) any recommendations the Administrator may have for improving the effectiveness of the program if it is to be continued.

SEC. 7. FEDERALIZATION OF AIRPORT SECURITY OPERATIONS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Section 44903(c) of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

    ‘(c) Security Program-

      ‘(1) IN GENERAL- The Administrator shall establish an air transportation security program at each airport regularly serving an air carrier holding a certificate issued by the Secretary of Transportation that provides a law enforcement presence and capability at each of those airports that is adequate to ensure the safety of passengers. In carrying out that program, the Administrator may use--

        ‘(A) the services of qualified State, local, and private law enforcement personnel;

        ‘(B) personnel employed by the Administrator; or

        ‘(C) personnel employed by another department, agency, or instrumentality of the Government with the consent of the head of the department, agency, or instrumentality.

      ‘(2) DEPLOYMENT OF ARMED PERSONNEL- In carrying out the program established under paragraph (1), the Administrator shall order the deployment of personnel authorized to carry firearms as follows:

        ‘(A) LARGEST AIRPORTS- At the 100 largest airports in the United States, in terms of average annual passenger boardings, the Administrator shall order the deployment of a sufficient number of personnel at each airport security screening location as may be necessary to ensure passenger safety.

        ‘(B) OTHER AIRPORTS- At United States airports not described in subparagraph (A), the Administrator shall order the deployment of at least 1 of such personnel at each such location.

        ‘(C) OTHER AREAS- The Administrator, in consultation with the airport operator and law enforcement authorities, may order the deployment of such personnel at any secure area of the airport as necessary to counter the risk of criminal violence, the risk of aircraft piracy at the airport, or the risk to air carrier aircraft operations at the airport.’.

    (b) SECURITY OF AIRCRAFT AND GROUND ACCESS- Section 44903 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

    ‘(h) SECURITY OF AIRCRAFT AND GROUND ACCESS- The Administrator shall establish and enforce rules to improve the physical security of air traffic control

facilities, parked aircraft, aircraft servicing equipment, aircraft supplies (including fuel), automobile parking facilities at airports, and access and transition areas at airports served by other means of ground or water transportation.’.

SEC. 8. ENHANCED ANTI-HIJACKING TRAINING FOR FLIGHT CREWS.

    The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall develop and implement a mandatory program of training for flight crews of aircraft providing interstate or intrastate air transportation in dealing with attempts to commit aircraft piracy (as defined in section 46502(a)(1)(A) of title 49, United States Code).

SEC. 9. IMPROVED PASSENGER SCREENING PROCESS.

    Section 44901 of title 49, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

‘ 44901. Screening passengers and property

    ‘(a) IN GENERAL- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall be responsible for the screening of all passengers and property that will be carried in a cabin of an aircraft in air transportation or intrastate air transportation. The screening must take place before boarding and be carried out by certified Federal security screening personnel using equipment approved for that purpose by the Administration.

    ‘(b) EXEMPTIONS- The Administrator may exempt any class of air transportation operations from this section except scheduled passenger operations of an air carrier providing air transportation under a certificate issued under section 41102 of this title or a permit issued under section 41302 of this title.

    ‘(c) CROSS-CHECKING DATA BASE INFORMATION- The Deputy Administrator, acting through the Aviation Security Coordination Council, shall establish and implement a system for cross-checking data on individuals identified on all Federal agency security-related data bases.’.

SEC. 10. TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT OF SECURITY SCREENING PERSONNEL.

    (a) USE OF OTHER AGENCIES- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall enter into a memorandum of understanding with any other Federal agency or department with law enforcement responsibilities to provide cooperation and assistance in the training of Federal airport security screening personnel.

    (b) IN GENERAL- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall establish a program for the hiring and training of airport security screening personnel.

    (c) Hiring-

      (1) QUALIFICATIONS- The Administrator shall establish, within 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act, qualification standards for individuals to be hired by the United States as airport security screening personnel. Those standards shall, at a minimum, require an individual--

        (A) to have a satisfactory or better score on a Federal security screening personnel selection examination;

        (B) to be a national of the United States as defined in section 101(a)(22) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(22));

        (C) to meet the requirements set forth in section 108.31(a) of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations; and

        (D) to have passed an examination for recent consumption of a controlled substance.

      (2) EXAMINATION; REVIEW OF EXISTING RULES- The Administrator shall develop a Federal security screening personnel examination for use in determining the qualification of individuals seeking employment as airport security screening personnel. The Administrator shall also review, and revise as necessary, any rule or regulation governing the employment of individuals as airport security screening personnel.

    (d) Training-

      (1) IN GENERAL- The Administrator shall, within 60 days after the date of enactment of this Act, develop a plan for the training of Federal airport security screening personnel. The plan shall, at a minimum, require--

        (A) 40 hours of classroom training; and

        (B) 60 hours of on-the-job training.

      (2) EQUIPMENT-SPECIFIC TRAINING- An individual employed as a Federal airport security screener may not use any security screening device or equipment in the scope of that individual’s employment unless the individual has been trained and certified as proficient on that device or equipment.

      (3) CONFORMING AMENDMENTS- Section 44935(e) of title 49, United States Code, is amended--

        (A) by striking paragraph (1) and inserting the following:

      ‘(1) In general- The Administrator shall establish training standards for screeners.’;

        (B) by striking ‘As part of the final rule, the’ in paragraph (2)(A) and inserting ‘The’;

        (C) by striking ‘(2), as part of the final rule,’ in paragraph (3) and inserting ‘(2)’; and

        (D) by striking ‘40’ in paragraph (3) and inserting ‘60’.

    (e) Testing-

      (1) ANNUAL TESTING- The Administrator shall by rule require that individuals employed as Federal airport security screening personnel be tested for proficiency not less often than once annually.

      (2) RANDOM AND SPOT TESTING- The Administrator shall review and revise as necessary, or prescribe, rules governing the random, spot, or other testing of such personnel in addition to the annual testing required by paragraph (1).

    (f) AUTHORIZATION OF EMPLOYMENT- The Secretary of Transportation is authorized to employ, appoint, and fix the compensation of such a number of individuals as may be necessary to carry out sections 44901 and 44903 of title 49, United States Code, in accordance with the provisions of part III of title 5, United States Code, without regard to any limitation on number of employees imposed by any other law or Executive Order.

SEC. 11. BACKGROUND CHECKS ON HEAVY PLANE FLIGHT TRAINING APPLICANTS.

    Section 44936(a) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by striking ‘access, to--’ in subsection (a) and inserting ‘access, and of each individual seeking flight training for an aircraft larger than an aircraft described in (f)(14)(A), to--’.

SEC. 12. SECURITY FEE.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Chapter 481 is amended by adding at the end thereof the following:

‘ 48114. Security fee

    ‘(a) IN GENERAL- The Secretary of Transportation shall collect a user fee from commercial air carriers. Amounts collected under this section shall be treated as offsetting collections to partially offset the Federal Aviation Administration’s costs of providing aviation security services to air carriers. The amounts collected shall be immediately available to the Administration for obligation and expenditure for its activities, and shall remain available in a revolving fund, to be established by the Administration, until expended.

    ‘(b) AMOUNT OF FEE- Commercial air carriers shall pay $1.00 for each one-way revenue passenger, on the basis of on-line origin-destination travel.

    ‘(c) DEFINITIONS- As used in this section--

      ‘(1) COMMERCIAL AIR CARRIER- The term ‘commercial air carrier’ means a commercial operator that engages in the carriage of persons in air commerce for compensation or hire.

      ‘(2) REVENUE PASSENGER- The term ‘revenue passenger’ means a passenger on board a flight in revenue service and does not include passengers traveling for a zero fare on frequent flyer or mileage programs or non-revenue air carrier employees.’.

    (b) CLERICAL AMENDMENT- The table of sections for chapter 481 is amended by adding at the end thereof the following:

      ‘48114. Security fee’.

    (c) EFFECTIVE DATE- The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply with respect to transportation beginning after the date which is 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act.

SEC. 13. INCREASED AVIATION SECURITY FUNDING.

    (a) IN GENERAL- Part C of subtitle VII of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

‘CHAPTER 483--AVIATION SECURITY FUNDING

      ‘Sec. 48301. Aviation security funding.

‘ 48301. Aviation security funding

    ‘There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Transportation for fiscal years 2002, 2003, and 2004, such sums as may be necessary to carry out chapter 449 and related aviation security activities under this title.’.

    (b) CONFORMING AMENDMENT- The subtitle analysis for subtitle VII of title 49, United States Code, is amended by inserting after the item relating to chapter 482 the following:

48301’.

SEC. 14. DEFINITIONS.

    Except as otherwise explicitly provided, any term used in this Act that is defined in section 40102 of title 49, United States Code, has the meaning given that term in that section.