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Aviation Security Costs, Transportation Security Administration

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The Inspector General testified before the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Aviation Subcommittee regarding TSA’s aviation security costs. In the last 14 months TSA has made noteworthy accomplishments without any preexisting infrastructure for overseeing contracts or managing human resources. However, controlling costs must be a priority. The Inspector General testified TSA will need at least $3 billion to integrate explosives detection into baggage-handling systems at the largest airports, and the need to deploy more effective equipment to meet threats will be ongoing. He urged caution before adding more air-travel fees or taxes, saying the most likely option for meeting TSA’s financial requirements above existing revenues are to continue using the General Fund to pay a large portion of security costs. Under Secretary of Transportation for Security Adm. James M. Loy also testified.