November 24, 2020

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TSA Amends Surface Security Training Compliance Dates

The TSA published a notice in Monday’s Federal Register
(available online today; 85
FR 67681-67683
) announcing the extension of compliance deadlines for the “Security
Training for Surface Transportation Employees
” final rule. This notice further
extends one of the compliance deadlines that was
in May. Both sets of extensions were established because of
complications in the transportation sector due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this latest extension the TSA keeps the effective date of
the regulation at the extended date of September 21st, 2020. The deadline
for notifying TSA of applicability determination (1570.105) remains October
21st, 2020. The deadline for providing security coordinator information (49 CFR
1570.201) remains October 28th, 2020. The notice states that
the deadline for §1570.203 (security incident reporting requirement) compliance
has not been changed. There was no specific date set in the regulation for that
requirement, so the effective date for that requirement is the effective date
of the regulation; 9-21-20.

The only change then is the deadline for submission of
security training program to TSA for approval {§1570.109(b)}; it is being
changed from December 21st, 2020 to March 22nd, 2021.

TSA is making this change in the regulation without going through
the publish and comment process under provisions of 5
USC 553
(b) and (d). They note that:

“TSA has good cause to delay the
compliance deadline for submission of security training programs without
advance notice and comment or a delayed effective date. To delay taking this
action while waiting for public comment would be impracticable and contrary to
the public interest. The owner/operators subject to the requirements of the
final rule need immediate certainty regarding the deadlines of the final rule
so that they may focus on other urgent issues affecting their operations.”