12.13.11

Burr, Hutchison, Rockefeller Win Passage of Bill Giving Expedited Airport Screening to Armed Forces

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Richard Burr, Kay Bailey Hutchison, and Jay Rockefeller yesterday won Senate passage of the text of their bill, S. 1954, which would direct the Transportation Security Administration to develop and implement a plan providing expedited screening through the country's airports for U.S. Armed Forces personnel and their accompanying family members.

"Our servicemen and women chose service over self when they volunteered to defend our nation. This sacrifice requires they and their families travel wherever duty calls, whether that means to a different state or overseas," Senator Burr said. "We ask so much of our military, and with the difficult tasks they perform and all they have on their minds, it makes sense to ensure their journeys are a little bit easier."

"Our military men and women make sacrifices for our nation every day and the least we can do is make their lives - and the lives of their family members -- easier when they travel around the country they defend," said Senator Hutchison. "They've earned the overwhelming right from a grateful nation to go to the front of the line. This bipartisan initiative allows armed forces personnel expedited security screening through U.S. airports and I'm pleased the Senate took advantage of this opportunity to work together and get this done."

"The men and women of our Armed Forces make sacrifices every day for this country. We should make this small adjustment to our TSA policy so that dedicated servicemen and women can travel a little easier as they head out on deployments or return to their families," said Senator Rockefeller.

The "Risk-Based Security Screening for Members of the Armed Forces Act," S. 1954, provides a clear timeline for developing and implementing the program. The legislation directs TSA, in consultation with the Department of Defense, to develop expedited screening procedures that do not reduce security but do reduce obstacles in the travel process for military personnel.