PHOTO: Three airport security programs could be cut by the President. (photo via Flickr/Andrew Pilloud)
Three airport security programs, all under the umbrella of the Transportation Security Administration, could be eliminated under President Donald Trump’s proposed budget, according to The Hill.
The budget, which must still be approved by Congress, calls for the elimination and reduction of “unauthorized and underperforming programs administered by TSA in order to strengthen screening at airport security checkpoints.”
The programs, all implemented after 9/11, are:
Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response Program
Ironically, this program—which does random sweeps of airport terminals, track stations and bus stations—was just increased last year by Congress following the bombing of the Brussels airport. Trump’s budget proposal claims that the program “achieves few Federal law enforcement priorities.”
Behavior Detection Officer Program
The most likely to go, since it has not been validated by the TSA and the Government Accountability Office, and already has been recommended for limited funding since 2013: The controversial program employs more than 3,000 Behavior Detection Officers who dress in plain clothes and patrol airports looking at body language, appearance and particular behaviors to select passengers for extra screening in airports.
Critics have said the program gives the TSA carte blanche for racial or religious profiling.
TSA Grants to state and local agencies
The elimination of the grants would “incentivize local law enforcement patrols that should already be a high priority for state and local partners,” according to the proposed budget.
READ MORE: Trump Budget Would Privatize Air Traffic Control
What It Means
There's an estimated annual savings of $80 million from the three cuts, but the TSA’s overall budget would not diminish in Trump’s proposal: He included a controversial increase in the TSA Passenger Security Fee on every airline ticket.