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Statement By Secretary Johnson On Additional Congressional Support For Airport Security

Release Date: 
June 13, 2016

For Immediate Release
DHS Press Office
Contact: 202-282-8010

Today I thank Congress for approving our $28 million reprogramming request for TSA, which will allow us to more effectively and efficiently screen the increased number of travelers at U.S. airports. I would especially like to thank Chairman John Hoeven, Ranking Member Jeanne Shaheen, Chairman John Carter, and Ranking Member Lucille Roybal-Allard for their efforts to ensure the approval of this request.

With this reprogramming, we can now convert 2,784 Transportation Security Officers from part time to full time, which will add an additional 53 lanes.  TSA will also be able to accelerate the hiring of an additional 600 TSOs before the end of this fiscal year.

With the first reprogramming of $34 million approved by Congress in May, we were able to expedite the hiring of 768 new TSOs and add more overtime pay for the existing TSA workforce.  This has allowed for the opening of 160 new security lanes at the busiest airports in the country.

Thanks to the hard work of TSA – its leadership, and, most importantly the men and women on the front lines at the airports, the average wait time for 99% of the traveling public is now 30 minutes or less, and for 93% of the public it is now 15 minutes or less. 

But we are not taking a victory lap. Now that summer is here, we will not let up on aviation security or addressing the increased levels of air travel.  As I have said many times, we will keep passengers moving this summer, but we will also keep them safe.  We will not short-cut aviation security. 

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Last Published Date: June 13, 2016
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