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Security and Accountability for Every (SAFE) Port Act

Published October 13, 2006

This legislation calls for the establishment of standards and equipment to scan for radiation all imported containers entering US ports. It includes protocols for emergency response, involving cooperation between local, state, and federal governments and the private sector. The act also calls for the inspection of "high-risk containers" before arrival to the US, and a strengthening of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program.

Excerpt:

Subtitle B--Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism

SEC. 211. <> ESTABLISHMENT.

(a) Establishment.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, is authorized to establish a voluntary government-private sector program (to be known as the ``Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism'' or ``C-TPAT'') to strengthen and improve the overall security of the international supply chain and United States border security, and to facilitate the movement of secure cargo through the international supply chain, by providing benefits to participants meeting or exceeding the program requirements. Participants in C-TPAT shall include Tier 1 participants, Tier 2 participants, and Tier 3 participants.

(b) Minimum Security Requirements.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall review the minimum security requirements of C- TPAT at least once every year and update such requirements as necessary.

SEC. 212. <> ELIGIBLE ENTITIES. Importers, customs brokers, forwarders, air, sea, land carriers, contract logistics providers, and other entities in the international supply chain and intermodal transportation system are eligible to apply to voluntarily enter into partnerships with the Department under C-TPAT.

SEC. 213. <> MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS. An applicant seeking to participate in C-TPAT shall--

(1) demonstrate a history of moving cargo in the international supply chain;

(2) conduct an assessment of its supply chain based upon security criteria established by the Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, including--

(A) business partner requirements;

(B) container security;

(C) physical security and access controls;

(D) personnel security;

(E) procedural security;

(F) security training and threat awareness; and

(G) information technology security;

(3) implement and maintain security measures and supply chain security practices meeting security criteria established by the Commissioner; and

(4) meet all other requirements established by the Commissioner, in consultation with the Commercial Operations Advisory Committee.

SEC. 214. <> TIER 1 PARTICIPANTS IN C-TPAT.

(a) Benefits.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall offer limited benefits to a Tier 1 participant who has been certified in accordance with the guidelines referred to in subsection (b). Such benefits may include a reduction in the score assigned pursuant to the Automated Targeting System of not greater than 20 percent of the high- risk threshold established by the Secretary.

(b) <> Guidelines.--Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall update the guidelines for certifying a C-TPAT participant's security measures and supply chain security practices under this section. Such guidelines shall include a background investigation and extensive documentation review.

(c) Timeframe.--To the extent practicable, the Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall complete the Tier 1 certification process within 90 days of receipt of an application for participation in C-TPAT.

SEC. 215. <> TIER 2 PARTICIPANTS IN C-TPAT.

(a) Validation.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall validate the security measures and supply chain security practices of a Tier 1 participant in accordance with the guidelines referred to in subsection (c). Such validation shall include on-site assessments at appropriate foreign locations utilized by the Tier 1 participant in its supply chain and shall, to the extent practicable, be completed not later than 1 year after certification as a Tier 1 participant.

(b) Benefits.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall extend benefits to each C-TPAT participant that has been validated as a Tier 2 participant under this section, which may include--

(1) reduced scores in the Automated Targeting System;

(2) reduced examinations of cargo; and

(3) priority searches of cargo.

(c) Guidelines.-- <> Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall develop a schedule and update the guidelines for validating a participant's security measures and supply chain security practices under this section.

SEC. 216. <> TIER 3 PARTICIPANTS IN C-TPAT.

(a) In General.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall establish a third tier of C-TPAT participation that offers additional benefits to participants who demonstrate a sustained commitment to maintaining security measures and supply chain security practices that exceed the guidelines established for validation as a Tier 2 participant in C-TPAT under section 215.

(b) Criteria.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall designate criteria for validating a C-TPAT participant as a Tier 3 participant under this section. Such criteria may include--

(1) compliance with any additional guidelines established by the Secretary that exceed the guidelines established pursuant to section 215 of this Act for validating a C-TPAT participant as a Tier 2 participant, particularly with respect to controls over access to cargo throughout the supply chain;

(2) submission of additional information regarding cargo prior to loading, as determined by the Secretary;

(3) utilization of container security devices, technologies, policies, or practices that meet standards and criteria established by the Secretary; and

(4) compliance with any other cargo requirements established by the Secretary.

(c) Benefits.--The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, in consultation with the Commercial Operations Advisory Committee and the National Maritime Security Advisory Committee, shall extend benefits to each C-TPAT participant that has been validated as a Tier 3 participant under this section, which may include--

(1) the expedited release of a Tier 3 participant's cargo in destination ports within the United States during all threat levels designated by the Secretary;

(2) further reduction in examinations of cargo;

(3) priority for examinations of cargo; and

(4) further reduction in the risk score assigned pursuant to the Automated Targeting System; and

(5) inclusion in joint incident management exercises, as appropriate.

(d) Deadline.--Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall designate appropriate criteria pursuant to subsection (b) and provide benefits to validated Tier 3 participants pursuant to subsection (c).

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