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Public Statements

Securing Maritime Activities through Risk-Based Targeting for Port Security Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. KING of New York. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

At the outset, Madam Speaker, I would like to thank Chairman Miller for her hard work on this bipartisan legislation.

After the attacks of September 11, Congress recognized the importance of securing our Nation's ports. The SMART Port, building on the work of the SAFE Port Act from 2006, addresses new maritime security challenges as the Department's port and maritime security mission continues to evolve and grow. This legislation accomplishes this by using a risk-based framework, enhancing security measures overseas before threats reach our shores, fostering a collaborative environment between Customs and Border Patrol and the U.S. Coast Guard in sharing port security duties and leveraging our trusted allies.

This bill would extend the validity of the TWIC cards, currently set to begin expiring later this year, until the Department of Homeland Security releases the TWIC Reader Rule, which has been delayed over and over again.

This bill is the result of more than a year of close congressional oversight and scrutiny through hearings held by the Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security. It's a good bill. I urge my colleagues to support it, and I reserve the balance of my time.

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Mr. KING of New York. Madam Speaker, in closing, the SMART Port Security Act makes needed improvements to the TWIC program and supports security grants. It also encourages both the CBP and the Coast Guard to reduce redundancies and overlap, which will save taxpayer dollars.

I ask my colleagues to support the bill, and I yield back the balance of my time.

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