7/19/2017: Recap of National Alternative Security Program (ASP) Organizations bi-annual workshop to advance maritime security initiatives

Submitted by Ms. Betty McMenemy, Office of Port & Facility Compliance

The National Alternative Security Program (ASP) Organizations held a workshop in Washington, D.C., June 14, 2017, to discuss ongoing and emerging issues related to meeting regulatory requirements of the Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) of 2002. MTSA was enacted to keep U.S. shores and vital waterways open, safe and secure for commerce.

The semiannual workshop was hosted at the offices of the American Chemistry Council. Attendees came from as far away as Seattle and New Orleans and represented 11 industry organizations that oversee thousands of MTSA-regulated vessels and over two hundred MTSA-regulated facilities that share common business models. Industries represented include passenger, ferry and gaming vessels, offshore service and towing vessels, chemical and barge fleeting facilities, and grain terminals.

Rear Adm. Paul Thomas, assistant commandant for prevention policy, opened the workshop by welcoming attendees and thanking them for their ongoing work to ensure a safe and secure marine transportation system. Thomas addressed questions and concerns from participants regarding the TWIC Reader Final Rule and the draft cyber Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular (NVIC 05-17), which published recently in the Federal Register for public comment. Thomas also talked about his upcoming transition to his new assignment as commander of the 8th Coast Guard District. Rear Adm. John Nadeau is slated to take over as assistant commandant for prevention policy at the end of July.

The workshop’s agenda consisted of a series of morning briefs from Coast Guard Headquarters staff on a wide variety of topics:

  • Current breach of security and situational awareness reporting requirements;
  • Status of the upcoming Homeport 2.0 migration;
  • Updates on current and proposed legislation, including the Thune-Nelson Bill;
  • Facility Security Officer training requirements;
  • Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) and the Policy Advisory Council (PAC) registry;
  • TWIC Reader Final Rule implementation;
  • Unmanned aerial systems; and
  • A report on MTSA compliance deficiencies found aboard ASP facilities and vessels.

 

In addition, a representative from the Transportation Security Administration gave a presentation about upcoming changes to the TWIC and the TSA Pre-Check programs.

In the afternoon, open discussions were held to allow all attendees the opportunity to ask questions as well as share lessons learned and best practices.

“Every opportunity we have to meet with large industry groups, to listen to their issues, and address areas of concern is certainly beneficial,” said Capt. Ryan Manning, chief of the Office of Port and Facility Compliance. “Discussions surrounding emerging challenges are of value to everyone in attendance.”

For more information, contact Ms. Betty McMenemy at betty.r.mcmenemy@uscg.mil.

 

This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.

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