H.R. 5346 (111th): To enhance homeland security in the ports and waterways of the United States, and for other purposes.

111th Congress, 2009–2010. Text as of May 19, 2010 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

I

111th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 5346

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 19, 2010

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security, and in addition to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned

A BILL

To enhance homeland security in the ports and waterways of the United States, and for other purposes.

1.

America’s Waterway Watch Program

(a)

Short title

This section may be cited as the America’s Waterway Watch Act.

(b)

Sense of Congress

It is the sense of Congress that the Secretary of Homeland Security should establish, within the Department of Homeland Security, citizen watch programs that promote voluntary reporting of suspected terrorist activity and suspicious behavior.

(c)

America’s Waterway Watch Program

(1)

In general

There is hereby established, within the Coast Guard, the America’s Waterway Watch Program (hereinafter in this section referred to as the Program).

(2)

Purpose

The Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall administer the Program in a manner that promotes voluntary reporting of activities that may indicate that a person or persons may be preparing to engage or engaging in a violation of law relating to a threat or an act of terrorism (as that term is defined in section 3077 of title 18, United States Code) against a vessel, facility, port, or waterway.

(3)

Information; training

(A)

Information

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant, may establish, as an element of the Program, a network of individuals and community-based organizations that enhance the situational awareness within the Nation’s ports and waterways. Such network shall, to the extent practicable, be conducted in cooperation with Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies.

(B)

Training

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant, may provide training in—

(i)

observing and reporting on covered activities; and

(ii)

sharing such reports and coordinating the response by Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies.

(4)

Instructional materials

(A)

In general

The Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, may—

(i)

develop instructional materials that—

(I)

provide information on inland waterways, ports and harbors, and coastal regions for a specific region, as well as specific vulnerabilities and threats common to a specific region; and

(II)

promote voluntary reporting of activities that may indicate that a person or persons may be preparing to engage or engaging in a violation of law relating to a threat or an act of terrorism (as that term is defined in section 3077 of title 18, United States Code) against a vessel, facility, port, or waterway; and

(ii)

distribute such materials to States, political subdivisions of the States, or non-governmental organization that provide instruction on boating or vessel operation in conjunction with any other instruction provided.

(B)

Dissemination

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant—

(i)

shall ensure that such materials are made available to any person or persons; and

(ii)

is authorized to require, as a condition of receipt of funding or materials, pursuant to subparagraph (A), that the recipient of such funding or materials develops a program to reach the widest possible audience.

(C)

Eligibility, Federal assistance

The receipt, use, and dissemination of such materials shall not diminish the eligibility of any State, political subdivision of such State, or non-governmental organization to receive Federal assistance or reduce the amount of Federal assistance that such State, political subdivision of such State, or non-governmental organization that otherwise receive.

(5)

Voluntary participation

Participation in the Program—

(A)

shall be wholly voluntary;

(B)

shall not be a prerequisite to eligibility for, or receipt of, any other service or assistance from, or to participation in, any other program of any kind; and

(C)

shall not require disclosure of information regarding the individual reporting covered activities or, for proprietary purposes, the location of such individual.

(6)

Definitions

In this subsection:

(A)

The term covered activity means any suspicious transaction, activity, or occurrence that involves, or is directed against, a vessel or facility (as that term is defined in section 70101(2) of title 46, United States Code) indicating that an individual or individuals may be preparing to engage, or engaging, in a violation of law relating to—

(i)

a threat to a vessel, facility, port, or waterway; or

(ii)

an act of terrorism (as that term is defined in section 3077 of title 18, United States Code).

(B)

The term facility has the same meaning such term has in section 70101(2) of title 46, United States Code.

(7)

Authorization of appropriations

There is authorized to be appropriated for the purposes of this section $3,000,000 for fiscal years 2010 through 2015. Such funds shall remain available until expended.

(d)

Coordination

The Secretary shall coordinate the Program with other like watch programs. The Secretary shall submit, concurrent with the President’s budget submission for each fiscal year, a report on coordination of the Program and like watch programs within the Department of Homeland Security to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and the Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives.

2.

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

(a)

In general

Not later than 120 days after completing the pilot program under section 70105(k)(1) of title 46, United States Code, to test TWIC access control technologies at port facilities and vessels nationwide, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall submit to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, and the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and to the Comptroller General a report containing an assessment of the results of the pilot. The report shall include—

(1)

the findings of the pilot program with respect to key technical and operational aspects of implementing TWIC technologies in the maritime sector;

(2)

a comprehensive listing of the extent to which established metrics were achieved during the pilot program; and

(3)

an analysis of the viability of those technologies for use in the maritime environment, including any challenges to implementing those technologies and strategies for mitigating identified challenges.

(b)

GAO assessment

The Comptroller General shall review the report and submit to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, and the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate an assessment of the report’s findings and recommendations.

3.

Review of interagency operational centers

(a)

In general

Within 180 days of enactment of this Act, the Department of Homeland Security Inspector General shall provide a report to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committees on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate concerning the establishment of Interagency Operational Centers for Port Security required by section 108 of the SAFE Port Act (Public Law 109–347).

(b)

Report

The report shall include—

(1)

an examination of the Department’s efforts to establish the Interagency Operational Centers;

(2)

a timeline for construction;

(3)

a detailed breakdown, by center, as to the incorporation of those representatives required by section 70107A(b)(3) of title 46, United States Code;

(4)

an analysis of the hurdles faced by the Department in developing these centers;

(5)

information on the number of security clearances attained by State, local, and tribal officials participating in the program; and

(6)

an examination of the relationship between the Interagency Operational Centers and State, local, and regional fusion centers participating in the Department of Homeland Security’s State, Local, and Regional Fusion Center Initiative under section 511 of the Implementing the Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Public Law 110–53), with a particular emphasis on—

(A)

how the centers collaborate and coordinate their efforts;

(B)

the resources allocated by the Coast Guard to both initiatives; and

(C)

architecture for integrated interagency targeting.

4.

Maritime security response teams

(a)

In general

Section 70106 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by striking subsection (c) and inserting the following:

(c)

Maritime security response teams

(1)

In general

In addition to the maritime safety and security teams, the Secretary shall establish no less than two maritime security response teams to act as the Coast Guard’s rapidly deployable counterterrorism and law enforcement response units that can apply advanced interdiction skills in response to threats of maritime terrorism.

(2)

Minimization of response time

The maritime security response teams shall be stationed in such a way to minimize, to the extent practicable, the response time to any reported maritime terrorist threat.

(d)

Coordination with other agencies

To the maximum extent feasible, each maritime safety and security team and maritime security response team shall coordinate its activities with other Federal, State, and local law enforcement and emergency response agencies.

.

5.

Coast Guard detection canine team program expansion

(a)

Definitions

For purposes of this section:

(1)

Canine detection team

The term detection canine team means a canine and a canine handler that are trained to detect narcotics or explosives, or other threats as defined by the Secretary.

(2)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of Homeland Security.

(b)

Detection canine teams

(1)

Increased capacity

Not later than 240 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall—

(A)

begin to increase the number of detection canine teams certified by the Coast Guard for the purposes of maritime-related security by no fewer than 10 canine teams annually through fiscal year 2012; and

(B)

encourage owners and operators of port facilities, passenger cruise liners, oceangoing cargo vessels, and other vessels identified by the Secretary to strengthen security through the use of highly trained detection canine teams.

(2)

Canine procurement

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall—

(A)

procure detection canine teams as efficiently as possible, including, to the greatest extent possible, through increased domestic breeding, while meeting the performance needs and criteria established by the Commandant;

(B)

support expansion and upgrading of existing canine training facilities operated by the Department of Homeland Security; and

(C)

as appropriate, partner with other Federal, State, or local agencies, nonprofit organizations, universities, or the private sector to increase the breeding and training capacity for Coast Guard canine detection teams.

(c)

Deployment

The Secretary shall prioritize deployment of the additional canine teams to ports based on risk, consistent with the Security and Accountability For Every Port Act of 2006 (Public Law 109–347).

(d)

Authorization

There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary such sums as may be necessary to carry out this section for fiscal years 2010 through 2012.

6.

Coast Guard port assistance program

(a)

In general

Section 70110 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

(f)

Coast Guard Assistance Program

(1)

In general

The Secretary may lend, lease, donate, or otherwise provide equipment, and provide technical training and support, to the owner or operator of a foreign port or facility—

(A)

to assist in bringing the port or facility into compliance with applicable International Ship and Port Facility Code standards;

(B)

to assist the port or facility in meeting standards established under section 70109A of this chapter; and

(C)

to assist the port or facility in exceeding the standards described in subparagraphs (A) and (B).

(2)

Conditions

The Secretary—

(A)

shall provide such assistance based upon an assessment of the risks to the security of the United States and the inability of the owner or operator of the port or facility otherwise to bring the port or facility into compliance with those standards and to maintain compliance with them;

(B)

may not provide such assistance unless the port or facility has been subjected to a comprehensive port security assessment by the Coast Guard or a third party entity certified by the Secretary under section 70110A(b) to validate foreign port or facility compliance with International Ship and Port Facility Code standards; and

(C)

may only lend, lease, or otherwise provide equipment that the Secretary has first determined is not required by the Coast Guard for the performance of its missions.

.

(b)

Safety and security assistance for foreign ports

(1)

In General

Section 70110(e)(1) of title 46, United States Code, is amended by striking the second sentence and inserting the following: The Secretary shall establish a strategic plan to utilize those assistance programs to assist ports and facilities that are found by the Secretary under subsection (a) not to maintain effective antiterrorism measures in the implementation of port security antiterrorism measures..

(2)

Conforming Amendments

(A)

Section 70110 of title 46, United States Code, is amended—

(i)

by inserting or facilities after ports in the section heading;

(ii)

by inserting or facility after port each place it appears; and

(iii)

by striking Ports in the heading for subsection (e) and inserting Ports, Facilities,.

(B)

The chapter analysis for chapter 701 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by striking the item relating to section 70110 and inserting the following:

70110. Actions and assistance for foreign ports or facilities and United States territories.

.

7.

Maritime biometric identification

(a)

In general

Within one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall conduct, in the maritime environment, a program for the mobile biometric identification of suspected individuals, including terrorists, to enhance border security and for other purposes.

(b)

Requirements

The Secretary shall ensure the program required in this section is coordinated with other biometric identification programs within the Department of Homeland Security.

(c)

Cost analysis

Within 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Appropriations and Homeland Security of the House of Representatives and the Committees on Appropriations and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate an analysis of the cost of expanding the Coast Guard’s biometric identification capabilities for use by the Coast Guard's Deployable Operations Group, cutters, stations, and other deployable maritime teams considered appropriate by the Secretary, and any other appropriate Department of Homeland Security maritime vessels and units. The analysis may include a tiered plan for the deployment of this program that gives priority to vessels and units more likely to encounter individuals suspected of making illegal border crossings through the maritime environment.

(d)

Definition

For the purposes of this section, the term biometric identification means use of fingerprint and digital photography images and facial and iris scan technology.

(e)

Study on combination of facial and iris recognition

(1)

Study required

The Secretary of Homeland Security shall carry out a study on the use by the Coast Guard of the combination of facial and iris recognition to rapidly identify individuals for security purposes. Such study shall focus on—

(A)

increased accuracy of facial recognition;

(B)

enhancement of existing iris recognition technology; and

(C)

establishment of integrated face and iris features for accurate identification of individuals.

(2)

Purpose of study

The purpose of the study required by paragraph (1) is to facilitate the use of a combination of facial and iris recognition to provide a higher probability of success in identification than either approach on its own and to achieve transformational advances in the flexibility, authenticity, and overall capability of integrated biometric detectors and satisfy one of major issues with war against terrorists. The operational goal of the study should be to provide the capability to nonintrusively collect biometrics (face image, iris) in an accurate and expeditious manner to assist the Coast Guard in fulfilling its mission to protect and support national security.

8.

Review of potential threats

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall submit to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report analyzing the threat, vulnerability, and consequence of a terrorist attack on gasoline and chemical cargo shipments in port activity areas in the United States.

9.

Port security pilot

The Secretary of Homeland Security shall establish a pilot program to test and deploy preventive radiological or nuclear detection equipment on Coast Guard vessels and other locations in select port regions to enhance border security and for other purposes. The pilot program shall leverage existing Federal grant funding to support this program and the procurement of additional equipment.

10.

Seasonal workers

(a)

Study

The Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study on the effects that the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (in this section referred to as TWIC) required by section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, has on companies that employ seasonal employees.

(b)

Report

Not later than one year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General shall submit a report to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate on the results of the study, including—

(1)

costs associated in requiring seasonal employees to obtain TWIC cards on companies;

(2)

whether the Coast Guard and Transportation Security Administration are processing TWIC applications quickly enough for seasonal workers to obtain TWIC certification;

(3)

whether TWIC compliance costs or other factors have led to a reduction in service;

(4)

the impact of TWIC on the recruiting and hiring of seasonal and other temporary employees; and

(5)

an assessment of possible alternatives to TWIC certification that may be used for seasonal employees including any security vulnerabilities created by those alternatives.

11.

Pilot Program for fingerprinting of maritime workers

(a)

In general

Within 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall establish procedures providing for an individual who is required to be fingerprinted for purposes of obtaining a transportation security card under section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, to be fingerprinted at any facility operated by or under contract with an agency of the Department of Homeland Security that fingerprints the public for the Department.

(b)

Expiration

This section expires on December 31, 2012.

12.

Transportation security cards on vessels

Section 70105(b)(2) of title 46, United States Code, is amended—

(1)

in subparagraph (B), by inserting after title the following: allowed unescorted access to a secure area designated in a vessel security plan approved under section 70103 of this title; and

(2)

in subparagraph (D), by inserting after tank vessel the following: allowed unescorted access to a secure area designated in a vessel security plan approved under section 70103 of this title.

13.

International labor study

The Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study of methods to conduct a background security investigation of an individual who possesses a biometric identification card that complies with International Labor Convention number 185 that are equivalent to the investigation conducted on individuals applying for a visa to enter the United States. The Comptroller General shall submit a report on the study within 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate.

14.

Maritime Security Advisory Committees

Section 70112 of title 46, United States Code, is amended—

(1)

by amending subsection (b)(5) to read as follows:

(5)
(A)

The National Maritime Security Advisory Committee shall be composed of—

(i)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the port authorities;

(ii)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the facilities owners or operators;

(iii)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the terminal owners or operators;

(iv)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the vessel owners or operators;

(v)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the maritime labor organizations;

(vi)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the academic community;

(vii)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of State or local governments; and

(viii)

at least 1 individual who represents the interests of the maritime industry.

(B)

Each Area Maritime Security Advisory Committee shall be composed of individuals who represents the interests of the port industry, terminal operators, port labor organizations, and other users of the port areas.

; and

(2)

in subsection (g)—

(A)

in paragraph (1)(A), by striking 2008; and inserting 2010;;

(B)

by repealing paragraph (2);

(C)

by striking (1); and

(D)

by redesignating subparagraphs (A) and (B) as paragraphs (1) and (2).

15.

Seamen’s shoreside access

Each facility security plan approved under section 70103(c) of title 46, United States Code, shall provide a system for seamen assigned to a vessel at that facility, pilots, and representatives of seamen’s welfare and labor organizations to board and depart the vessel through the facility in a timely manner at no cost to the individual.

16.

Waterside security of certain dangerous cargo

(a)

National Study

(1)

In general

The Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall—

(A)

initiate a national study to identify measures to improve the security of maritime transportation of certain dangerous cargo; and

(B)

coordinate with other Federal agencies, the National Maritime Security Advisory Committee, and appropriate State and local government officials through the Area Maritime Security Committees and other existing coordinating committees, to evaluate the waterside security of vessels carrying, and waterfront facilities handling, certain dangerous cargo.

(2)

Matters to be included

The study conducted under this subsection shall include—

(A)

an analysis of existing risk assessment information relating to waterside security generated by the Coast Guard and Area Maritime Security Committees as part of the Maritime Security Risk Assessment Model;

(B)

a review and analysis of appropriate roles and responsibilities of maritime stakeholders, including Federal, State, and local law enforcement and industry security personnel, responsible for waterside security of vessels carrying, and waterfront facilities handling, certain dangerous cargo, including—

(i)

the number of ports in which State and local law enforcement entities are providing any services to enforce Coast Guard-imposed security zones around vessels transiting to, through, or from United States ports or to conduct security patrols in United States ports;

(ii)

the number of formal agreements entered into between the Coast Guard and State and local law enforcement entities to engage State and local law enforcement entities in the enforcement of Coast Guard-imposed security zones around vessels transiting to, through, or from United States ports or the conduct of port security patrols in United States ports, the duration of those agreements, and the aid that State and local entities are engaged to provide through such agreements;

(iii)

the extent to which the Coast Guard has set national standards for training, equipment, and resources to ensure that State and local law enforcement entities engaged in enforcing Coast Guard-imposed security zones around vessels transiting to, through, or from United States ports or in conducting port security patrols in United States ports (or both) can deter to the maximum extent practicable a transportation security incident;

(iv)

the extent to which the Coast Guard has assessed the ability of State and local law enforcement entities to carry out the security assignments that they have been engaged to perform, including their ability to meet any national standards for training, equipment, and resources that have been established by the Coast Guard in order to ensure that those entities can deter to the maximum extent practicable a transportation security incident;

(v)

the extent to which State and local law enforcement entities are able to meet national standards for training, equipment, and resources established by the Coast Guard to ensure that those entities can deter to the maximum extent practicable a transportation security incident;

(vi)

the differences in law enforcement authority, and particularly boarding authority, between the Coast Guard and State and local law enforcement entities, and the impact that these differences have on the ability of State and local law enforcement entities to provide the same level of security that the Coast Guard provides during the enforcement of Coast Guard-imposed security zones and the conduct of security patrols in United States ports; and

(vii)

the extent of resource, training, and equipment differences between State and local law enforcement entities and the Coast Guard units engaged in enforcing Coast Guard-imposed security zones around vessels transiting to, through, or from United States ports or conducting security patrols in United States ports;

(C)

recommendations for risk-based security measures to improve waterside security of vessels carrying, and waterfront facilities handling, certain dangerous cargo; and

(D)

identification of security funding alternatives, including an analysis of the potential for cost-sharing by the public and private sectors as well as any challenges associated with such cost-sharing.

(3)

Information protection

In carrying out the coordination necessary to effectively complete the study, the Commandant shall implement measures to ensure the protection of any sensitive security information, proprietary information, or classified information collected, reviewed, or shared during collaborative engagement with maritime stakeholders and other Government entities, except that nothing in this paragraph shall constitute authority to withhold information from—

(A)

the Congress; or

(B)

first responders requiring such information for the protection of life or property.

(4)

Report

Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary, acting through the Commandant, shall submit to the Committees on Homeland Security and Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committees on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate a report on the results of the study under this subsection.

(b)

National strategy

Not later than 6 months after submission of the report required by subsection (a), the Secretary, acting through the Commandant, shall develop, in conjunction with appropriate Federal agencies, a national strategy for the waterside security of vessels carrying, and waterfront facilities handling, certain dangerous cargo. The strategy shall utilize the results of the study required by subsection (a).

(c)

Security of certain dangerous cargo

(1)

Enforcement of security zones

Consistent with other provisions of Federal law, the Coast Guard shall coordinate and be responsible for the enforcement of any Federal security zone established by the Coast Guard around a vessel containing certain dangerous cargo. The Coast Guard shall allocate available resources so as to deter and respond to a transportation security incident, to the maximum extent practicable, and to protect lives or protect property in danger.

(2)

Limitation on reliance on State and local government

Any security arrangement approved after the date of enactment of this Act to assist in the enforcement of any security zone established by the Coast Guard around a vessel carrying a certain dangerous cargo or around a waterfront facility handling a certain dangerous cargo may not be based upon the provision of security by a State or local government unless the Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, ensures that the waterborne patrols operated as part of that security arrangement by a State or local government have the training, resources, personnel, and experience necessary to carry out the security responsibilities that they have been engaged to perform in order, to the maximum extent practicable, to deter and respond to a transportation security incident.

(3)

Determination required for new facilities

The Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, may not approve a facility security plan under section 70103 of title 46, United States Code, for a new facility the construction of which is begun after the date of enactment of this Act, that receives or ships through maritime commerce certain dangerous cargo unless the Secretary determines that there are sufficient resources available to ensure compliance with the facility security plan.

(4)

Resource deficiency reporting

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall provide to the Committees on Homeland Security and Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committees on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate 90 days after the end of each fiscal year a report indicating—

(A)

the number of security zones established for certain dangerous cargo shipments;

(B)

the number of certain dangerous cargo shipments provided a waterborne security escort, subdivided by Federal, State, local, or private security; and

(C)

an assessment as to any additional vessels, personnel, infrastructure, and other resources necessary to provide waterborne escorts to those certain dangerous cargo shipments for which a security zone is established.

(d)

Definitions

For the purposes of this section, the follow definitions apply:

(1)

Certain dangerous cargo

The term certain dangerous cargo means a material, or a group or class of material, in a particular amount and form that the Secretary, through the Commandant, determines by regulation poses a significant risk of creating a transportation security incident while being transported in maritime commerce.

(2)

Area Maritime Security Committee

The term Area Maritime Security Committee means each of those committees responsible for producing Area Maritime Transportation Security Plans under chapter 701 of title 46, United States Code.

(3)

Transportation security incident

The term transportation security incident has the same meaning as that term has in section 70101 of title 46, United States Code.

17.

Review of Liquefied Natural Gas Facilities

(a)

Notice of recommendation

Consistent with other provisions of law, the Secretary of Homeland Security must notify the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission when a recommendation is made that the waterway to a proposed waterside liquefied natural gas facility is suitable or unsuitable for the marine traffic associated with such facility.

(b)

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission response

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission shall respond to the Secretary’s recommendation under subsection (a) by informing the Secretary within 90 days of notification or at the conclusion of any available appeal process, whichever is later, of what action the Commission has taken, pursuant to its authorities under the Natural Gas Act, regarding a proposal to construct and operate a waterside liquefied natural gas facility subject to a determination made under subsection (a).

18.

Use of secondary authentication for transportation security cards

The Secretary of Homeland Security may use a secondary authentication system for individuals applying for transportation security cards when fingerprints are not able to be taken or read to enhance transportation security.

19.

Assessment of transportation security card enrollment sites

(a)

In general

Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall prepare an assessment of the enrollment sites for transportation security cards issued under section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, including—

(1)

the feasibility of keeping those enrollment sites open after the date of enactment of this Act; and

(2)

the quality of customer service, including the periods of time individuals are kept on hold on the telephone, whether appointments are kept, and processing times for applications.

(b)

Timelines and benchmarks

The Secretary shall develop timelines and benchmarks for implementing the findings of the assessment as the Secretary deems necessary.

20.

Assessment of the feasibility of efforts to mitigate the threat of small boat attack in major ports

The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall assess and report to Congress on the feasibility of efforts to mitigate the threat of small boat attack in security zones of major ports, including specifically the use of transponders or radio frequency identification devices to track small boats.

21.

Report and recommendation for uniform security background checks

Not later than one year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General shall submit to the Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives a report that contains—

(1)

a review of background checks and forms of identification required under State and local transportation security programs;

(2)

a determination as to whether the background checks and forms of identification required under such programs duplicate or conflict with Federal programs; and

(3)

recommendations on limiting the number of background checks and forms of identification required under such programs to reduce or eliminate duplication with Federal programs.

22.

Animal-propelled vessels

Notwithstanding section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, the Secretary shall not require an individual to hold a transportation security card, or be accompanied by another individual who holds such a card if—

(1)

the individual has been issued a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner’s document under part E of subtitle II of title 46, United States Code;

(2)

the individual is not allowed unescorted access to a secure area designated in a vessel or facility security plan approved by the Secretary; and

(3)

the individual is engaged in the operation of a live animal-propelled vessel.

23.

Requirements for issuance of transportation security cards; access pending issuance; redundant background checks

Section 70105 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsections:

(n)

Escorting

The Secretary shall coordinate with owners and operators subject to this section to allow any individual who has a pending application for a transportation security card under this section or is waiting for reissuance of such card, including any individual whose card has been lost or stolen, and who needs to perform work in a secure or restricted area to have access to such area for that purpose through escorting of such individual in accordance with subsection (a)(1)(B) by another individual who holds a transportation security card.

(o)

Processing time

The Secretary shall review an initial transportation security card application and respond to the applicant, as appropriate, including the mailing of an Initial Determination of Threat Assessment letter, within 30 days after receipt of the initial application. The Secretary shall, to the greatest extent practicable, review appeal and waiver requests submitted by a transportation security card applicant, and send a written decision or request for additional information required for the appeal or waiver determination, within 30 days after receipt of the applicant’s appeal or waiver written request. For an applicant that is required to submit additional information for an appeal or waiver determination, the Secretary shall send a written decision, to the greatest extent practicable, within 30 days after receipt of all requested information.

(p)

Receipt of cards

Within 180 days after the date of enactment of this subsection, the Secretary shall develop a process to permit an individual approved for a transportation security card under this section to receive the card at the individual’s place of residence.

(q)

Fingerprinting

The Secretary shall establish procedures providing for an individual who is required to be fingerprinted for purposes of this section to be fingerprinted at facilities operated by or under contract with an agency of the Department of the Secretary that engages in fingerprinting the public for transportation security or other security purposes.

(r)

Redundant background checks

The Secretary shall prohibit a State or political subdivision thereof from requiring a separate security background check for any purpose for which a transportation security card is issued under this section. The Secretary may waive the application of this subsection with respect to a State or political subdivision thereof if the State or political subdivision demonstrates a compelling homeland security reason that a separate security background check is necessary.

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24.

Harmonizing security card expirations

Section 70105(b) of title 46, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

(6)

The Secretary may extend for up to one year the expiration of a biometric transportation security card required by this section to align the expiration with the expiration of a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner document required under chapter 71 or 73.

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25.

Administration of Maritime Security

(a)

Establish maritime security as a Coast Guard function

Chapter 5 of title 14, United States Code, is further amended by adding at the end the following new section:

103.

Maritime security

To protect life, property, and the environment on, under, and over waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and on vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, the Commandant shall promote maritime security as follows:

(1)

By taking actions necessary in the public interest to protect such life, property, and the environment.

(2)

Based on priorities established by the Commandant including—

(A)

protecting maritime borders from all intrusions, reducing the risk from terrorism to United States passengers at foreign and domestic ports and in designated waterfront facilities, and preventing and responding to terrorist attacks and other homeland security threats;

(B)

protecting critical maritime infrastructure and other key resources; and

(C)

preventing, to the maximum extent practicable, a transportation security incident as defined in section 70101 of title 46.

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(b)

Clerical amendment

The analysis at the beginning of such chapter is further amended by adding at the end the following new item:

Sec. 103. Maritime security.

.

(c)

Maritime Security Staff

(1)

In general

Chapter 3 of title 14, United States Code, is further amended by adding at the end the following new sections:

60.

Maritime security workforce

(a)

Designation of maritime security workforce

(1)

In general

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant, shall ensure appropriate coverage of maritime security missions within the workforce in each sector.

(2)

Required positions

In designating positions under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include the following maritime security-related positions:

(A)

Program oversight.

(B)

Counterterrorism functions.

(C)

Counterintelligence functions.

(D)

Criminal investigations related to maritime security.

(E)

Port security enforcement.

(F)

Any other activities that the Commandant deems as necessary.

(3)

Maritime security management activities

The Secretary shall also designate under paragraph (1) those maritime security-related management positions located at Coast Guard headquarters, Coast Guard Readiness Command, Coast Guard Operations Command, the Deployable Operations Group, and the Intelligence Coordination Center.

(b)

Career paths

The Secretary, acting through the Commandant, may establish appropriate career paths for civilian and military Coast Guard personnel who wish to pursue careers in maritime security are identified in terms of the education, training, experience, and assignments necessary for career progression of civilians and member of the Armed Forces to the most senior maritime security positions. The Secretary shall make available published information on such career paths.

(c)

Balanced workforce policy

In the development of maritime security workforce policies under this section with respect to any civilian employees or applicants for employment with the Coast Guard, the Secretary shall, consistent with the merit system principles set out in paragraphs (1) and (2) of section 2301(b) of title 5, take into consideration the need to maintain a balance workforce in which women and members of racial and ethnic minority groups are appropriately represented in Government service.

(d)

Sector Chief of Maritime Security

(1)

In general

The Commandant may assign, as appropriate, a Chief of Maritime Security who shall be at least a Lieutenant Commander or civilian employee within the grade GS–13 of the General Schedule in each Coast Guard sector.

(2)

Functions

The Chief of Maritime Security for a sector—

(A)

is responsible for all individuals who, on behalf of the Coast Guard, conduct port security operations, counterterrorism operations, intelligence and counterintelligence operations, and support national defense operations; and

(B)

if not the Coast Guard officer in command of that sector, is the principal advisor to the Sector Commander regarding maritime security matters in that sector.

(e)

Signatories of letter of qualification

Each individual signing a letter of qualification for maritime security personnel must hold a letter of qualification for the type being certified.

61.

Centers of expertise for maritime security

(a)

Establishment

The Commandant may establish and operate one or more centers of Maritime Security (in this section referred to as a Center).

(b)

Missions

The Centers shall—

(1)

be used to facility education, training, and research in maritime security including maritime domain awareness, counterterrorism policy and operations, and intelligence collection, fusion, and dissemination;

(2)

develop a repository on information on maritime security; and

(3)

perform any other function as the Commandant may specify.

(c)

Joint operation with educational institution authorized

The Commandant may enter into an agreement with an appropriate official of an institution of higher education to—

(1)

provide for joint operation of a Center; and

(2)

provide necessary administrative service for a Center, including administration and allocation of funds.

(d)

Acceptance of donations

(1)

In general

The Commandant may accept, on behalf of a center, donations to be used to defray the costs of the Center or to enhance the operation of the Center.

(2)

Guidance

The Commandant shall prescribe written guidance setting forth the criteria to be used in determining if the acceptance of a donation is appropriate.

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(2)

Clerical amendment

The analysis at the beginning of such chapter is further amended by adding at the end the following new items:

Sec. 60. Maritime security workforce.

Sec. 61. Centers of expertise for maritime security.

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(d)

Powers and duties

Section 93 of title 14, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

(e)

In exercising the Commandant’s duties and responsibilities with regard to maritime security, the Commandant shall designate a flag officer to serve as the principal advisor to the Commandant for maritime security. The designee shall have at least 10 years combined experience in operations, intelligence, counterterrorism, counterintelligence, port security, criminal investigations (except maritime casualty investigations), and port security or other maritime security functions, and at least four years of leadership experience at a staff or unit carrying out maritime security functions.

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26.

Fresnel Lens in the Presque Isle Light House in Presque Isle, Michigan

The Commandant of the Coast Guard shall conduct a study and analysis of the feasibility of the restoring the Fresnel Lens in the Presque Isle Light House in Presque Isle, Michigan to operating condition to meet the safety needs of commerce and submit within 180 days the report to the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee after the date of enactment of this Act.