The Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act


The U.S. supply chain depends on a complex network of transportation modes and essential workers to meet the demands of the world's largest economy. Within this system, background checks serve a noble purpose, ensuring bad actors cannot access secure facilities, sensitive information, or high-risk materials.

What doesn't serve a useful purpose, however, is the mindless and wasteful credentialing system that forces frontline transportation workers to repeat the same background check they've already successfully passed in order to receive a different credential issued by the very same agency. 

Prior to operating at ports and maritime facilities or transporting hazardous materials, essential workers like truck drivers, railroad workers, longshoremen, pipeline operators, and warehouse managers must obtain multiple security credentials managed by the Transportation Security Administration and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. For hundreds of thousands of workers, this often means that they must submit to identical background checks and repeatedly pay fees in order to apply for and renew their credentials.

The Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act applies a simple, common sense solution to fix this costly bureaucratic nightmare, allowing workers to apply their existing valid background checks to multiple credentialing programs, such as the Transportation Worker Identification Credentials and Hazardous Materials Endorsements. By eliminating these duplicative screenings and harmonizing the administration of these important programs, the bill would codify formal recommendations by the Government Accountability Office dating back to 2007.  Those recommendations were reaffirmed in 2020 in a comprehensive security assessment conducted by the Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center (HSOAC).

The bipartisan Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act was introduced by U.S. Representatives Garret Graves (R-LA), Chairman of the House Aviation Subcommittee; Adam Smith (D-WA), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee; and Mark Green (R-TN), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, along with Representatives Michael Guest (R-MS), Dina Titus (D-NV), and Salud Carbajal (D-CA).  The Senate companion was introduced by Senators Roger Wicker (R-MS), Jon Tester (D-MT), Deb Fischer (R-NE), and Angus King (I-ME). 

These reforms do not make any modifications to the backend security assessment conducted on individual applicants, ensuring that they will undergo the same level of review as they do under current law.  

Take Action!

Show your support for the Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act by using the graphics below.  Various sizes are available for download by clicking on the images.

Statements of Support 

“Ridiculous regulations and red tape have crushed America’s supply chain workers. We need to expedite the time it takes to put an essential worker into our workforce, not requiring people to stand in line for security credentials only to have them get back in line to obtain a redundant background check for another TSA credential. The supply chain crisis has contributed to higher consumer costs and shortages, and this effort is part of the solution to make sure our transportation workforce is able to work at full speed. I look forward to working with this strong group of bipartisan lawmakers to ensure that this legislation strengthens our economy and supply chain while reducing costs and headaches.”

- Congressman Garret Graves

“I’ve heard from many transportation workers in my district who have had to spend a significant amount of time and money to keep their required credentials up to date. The legislation we introduced would create a more streamlined application and renewal process, reducing unnecessary hurdles for transportation workers, a crucial workforce in our economy. I am thrilled to have the support of Teamsters, Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO, Washington State Labor Council, and the American Trucking Associations and look forward to working with my colleagues to advance this important piece of legislation.”  

- Congressman Adam Smith

“Critical supply chain workers should not be subject to redundant and outdated government red tape which delays their employment,” said Rep. Dina Titus. “By streamlining the credentialing process across TSA-managed programs, we ensure that our supply chains are secure and ease the burden on applicants, including truck drivers, warehouse managers, and pipeline operators. Supporting these essential transportation workers will not only strengthen our economy, but also lower costs for consumers.”

- Congresswoman Dina Titus


“This legislation will cut through the red tape and streamline the process so workers can get back to moving goods across America, not wasting time and money."

- Senator Roger Wicker


“In the midst of a nation-wide truck driver shortage – we must be doing everything in our power to simplify the credentialing process for these essential workers in our supply chain. The Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act would streamline the application process and fees for applicants undergoing redundant background and security checks. As we look to keep our supply chain rolling and workforce strong, we must support our truck drivers by modernizing the credentialing process while keeping our trucking industry safe.”

- Senator Angus King


"Truckers and other transportation professionals often need a variety of security certifications to do their job. However, maintaining so many different credentials takes time, money, and can be complicated. To ease that burden, our bill will streamline the TSA's certification process without sacrificing security."

- Senator Deb Fischer


“Montana’s truckers and transportation workers fuel our economy – and forcing those folks to face expensive and redundant security certifications is a waste of time and money. Streamlining that process is a no-brainer, plain and simple. Together, we’ll keep working until we get this bipartisan bill across the finish line.”

- Senator Jon Tester


"Subjecting essential supply chain workers to the same exact background check multiple times in order to receive different credentials from the same agency does nothing to enhance security. This system only serves to pad government coffers by forcing truckers and other transportation workers to pay duplicative fees for a background check they’ve already cleared. Congress should not allow the inefficiencies of government bureaucracy to impede the efficiency of our supply chain, especially at the expense of those hardworking men and women who keep our economy running."

- Chris Spear, President and CEO, American Trucking Associations

“This common-sense, bipartisan bill provides a logical solution to fix some serious flaws in the credentialing process. These issues, which are well documented by GAO, incur considerable costs on drivers and fleets. Here is a perfect example of where Congress can make government work better to support the supply chain and essential, frontline workers who move our economy.” 

- Andrew Boyle, ATA Chairman and Co-President of Boyle Transportation


“We applaud Congressman Graves for introducing this critical piece of legislation that would simplify the process for hundreds of thousands of workers who need to obtain their transportation security credentials. The entire State of Louisiana—especially in regions along the banks of the Mississippi River—thrives on the transportation of goods, which provides high-paying jobs that help to lift people out of poverty.  Congressman Graves’ much-needed reforms would save time and money for members of our industry as well as ease the worker shortage that we are experiencing.”

- Renee Amar, Executive Director, Louisiana Motor Transport Association

“The hardworking men and women in the trucking industry and other essential members of our supply chain deserve a federal credentialing process that respects their time and money. The Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act would reform the current duplicative system by codifying recommendations repeatedly made by government audits to reduce redundancy, costs, and hassle.  I commend Congressman Adam Smith for leading this effort in Congress to support American workers and the resilience of our supply chain.”

- Sheri Call, President and CEO, Washington Trucking Associations

"The Mississippi Trucking Association thanks Representative Michael Guest for sponsoring H.R. 5840 that will eliminate redundant background checks and streamline the enrollment/renewal processes for the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) and Hazmat Endorsement (HME) programs. This removal of duplicative screening will minimize the time and fees required by transportation professionals to obtain credentials without reducing any safety or security measures. We appreciate the fact that Congressman Guest sees the importance of removing unnecessary barriers from the supply chain workers so that they can keep America moving."

- Hal Miller, President, Mississippi Trucking Association

"For too long, truck drivers in Nevada and across the nation have been subjected to redundant background checks, which do nothing to enhance the safety of America’s ports and roadways. Paying for the same background check up to three times only serves the TSA and lines the pockets of their government contractors.  We applaud Congresswoman Dina Titus for her leadership in stopping the private and bureaucratic interests from hosing truck drivers."

- Paul J. Enos, CEO, Nevada Trucking Association


“The current credentialing process is not only outdated and inefficient—it fails to make our country safer.  The government’s duplicative and siloed security screening programs must be improved to enhance our national security and respect truck drivers’ time and money.  As the Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, Congressman Mark Green has advocated for strong national security measures that don’t impede commerce, and we are grateful for his leadership on these long-overdue, common-sense reforms.”

Donna England, President and CEO of the Tennessee Trucking Association

Supply-Chain Support

More than 150 organizations representing all transportation modes, business, and labor have called on Congress to pass the Transportation Security Screening Modernization Act

Massive Supply Chain Coalition Calls for Reforms to Transportation Security Credentialing System by ATA Media on Scribd

Agricultural and Food Transporters Conference
Agricultural Retailers Association
AgTC Agriculture Transportation Coalition
Alabama Trucking Association
Alaska Fuel Storage and Handlers Alliance
Alaska Trucking Association
Allied Van Lines
American Association of Port Authorities
American Chemistry Council
American Pyrotechnics Association
American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association
American Trucking Associations
Arizona Moving Association
Arizona Petroleum Marketers Association
Arizona Trucking Association
Arkansas Oil Marketers Association, Inc.
Arkansas Trucking Association
Association of American Railroads
Automobile Carriers Conference
Baggett Transportation
Border Trade Alliance
California Trucking Association
Colorado Motor Carriers Association
Colorado Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Store Association
Connecticut Energy Marketers Association
Delaware Motor Transport Association
Empire State Energy Association, Inc.
Energy Marketers Association of Rhode Island
Energy Marketers of America
Florida Petroleum Marketers Association, Inc.
Florida Trucking Association
Fresh Produce Association of the Americas
Fuel Merchants Association of New Jersey
Fuel True: Independent Energy and Convenience of Kansas
Fueling Minnesota
Garner Trucking Ltd
Gases and Welding Distributors Association
Georgia Motor Trucking Association
Georgia Oilmen’s Association
Government Freight Conference
Harbor Trucking Association
Hawaii Energy Marketers Association
Hawaii Transportation Association
Idaho Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association
Idaho Trucking Association
Illinois Fuel & Retail Association
Illinois Trucking Association
Indiana Food & Fuel Association
Indiana Motor Truck Association
Institute of Makers of Explosives
Intermodal Motor Carriers Conference
International Brotherhood of Teamsters
International Longshore and Warehouse Union Washington Area District Council
Interstate Natural Gas Association of America
Iowa Motor Truck Association
Kansas Motor Carriers Association 
Kentucky Petroleum Marketers Association
Kentucky Trucking Association
Louisiana Motor Transport Association
Louisiana Oil Marketers and Convenience Store Association
Lynden Inc.
Maine Energy Marketers Association
Maine Motor Transport Association
Maryland Motor Truck Association
Michigan Petroleum Association / Michigan Association of Convenience Stores
Michigan Trucking Association
Mid-Atlantic Petroleum Distributors’ Association
Minnesota Trucking Association
Mississippi Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Stores Association 
Mississippi Trucking Association
Missouri Petroleum & Convenience Association
Missouri Trucking Association
Montana Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Store Association
Montana Trucking Association
Motor Transport Association of Connecticut
Moving and Storage Conference
National Association of Chemical Distributors
National Council of Farmer Cooperatives 
National Energy & Fuels Institute
National Industrial Transportation League
National Motor Freight Traffic Association
National Private Truck Council
National Propane Gas Association
National Tank Truck Carriers
National Van Lines
NATSO, Representing America’s Travel Plazas and Truckstops
Nebraska Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Store Association 
Nebraska Trucking Association
Nevada Trucking Association
New England Convenience Store & Energy Marketers Association 
New Hampshire Motor Transport Association
New Jersey Motor Truck Association
New Mexico Petroleum Marketers Association
New Mexico Trucking Association
North American Van Lines
North Carolina Petroleum & Convenience Marketers 
North Carolina Trucking Association
North Dakota Petroleum Marketers Association 
North Dakota Motor Carriers Association
Ohio Energy & Convenience Association
Ohio Trucking Association
Oklahoma Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Store Association
Oklahoma Trucking Association
Oregon Fuels Association
Oregon Trucking Associations
Paxton Van Lines
Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association
Pennsylvania Petroleum Association
Petroleum & Convenience Marketers of Alabama
Prestera Trucking Inc.
PTS Worldwide, Inc.
Radiopharmaceutical Shippers & Carriers Committee
Railway Supply Institute
Reify Solutions
Republic Moving & Storage
Rhode Island Trucking Association
SIGMA: America's Leading Fuel Marketers
SJ Transportation
South Carolina Convenience & Petroleum Marketers Association 
South Carolina Trucking Association
South Dakota Petroleum & Propane Marketers Association 
South Dakota Trucking Association
Tennessee Fuel and Convenience Store Association
Tennessee Trucking Association
Texas Food & Fuel Association
Texas Trucking Association
Transportation Intermediaries Association
Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO
Tri-State Motor Transit Co.
Trucking Association of Massachusetts
Trucking Association of New York
Truckload Carriers Association
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Utah Petroleum Marketers & Retailers Association
Utah Trucking Association
Vermont Fuel Dealers Association
Vermont Truck and Bus Association
Virginia Petroleum & Convenience Marketers Association
Virginia Trucking Association
Washington Independent Energy Distributors
Washington Movers Conference
Washington State Labor Council
Washington Trucking Associations
West Virginia Oil Marketers & Grocers Association
West Virginia Trucking Association
Western Petroleum Marketers Association
Wisconsin Fuel and Retail Association
Wisconsin Motor Carriers Association
Women in Motion
Wyoming Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association
Wyoming Trucking Association
3GL, Ltd.

Additionally, following the Senate introduction of the bill, the American Trucking Associations, the National Tank Truck Carriers, the Border Trade Alliance, and the Institute of Makers of Explosives (IME)--a trade association founded with the mission to promote the safe and secure manufacture, transport, distribution and use of commercial explosives--wrote to the Senate sponsors to express support for the bill

Case Study: Alaska

Many communities in Alaska do not have access to a DMV, let alone facilities that can take and process fingerprints.  In fact, there are only two approved locations to take fingerprints in the Last Frontier, a landmass twice the size of Texas.  For most of the state, that means that a person must buy an expensive plane ticket in order to get fingerprints every time they need to renew their hazmat endorsement or TWIC card, which have varying expiration dates.  Having the ability to combine these processes would help people save significant time and money.