Chairwoman Roybal-Allard Statement at DHS Appropriations Hearing on TSA: Pandemic and Post-Pandemic Implications for Budget and Operations
Washington, DC – Today, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security is holding a hearing on “Transportation Security Administration: Pandemic and Post-Pandemic Implications for Budget and Operations.” Witnesses include TSA Senior Official Performing the Duties of Administrator Darby LaJoye.
“I welcome Darby LaJoye, the Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Administrator at the Transportation Security Administration, who is here to discuss TSA operations, both during the pandemic and as we look forward to moving past it.
“Members of the public likely interact with TSA and its employees more than any other component of the Department of Homeland Security – or any other federal department or agency. This interaction has become much more challenging during the pandemic. While air travelers may not always express their gratitude during the passenger screening process, what TSA and its employees do to protect our nation is greatly appreciated. TSA personnel work on the frontlines at great personal risk to ensure the safety of air travel. In fact, 16 TSA personnel have passed away after contracting COVID-19 while performing their duties.
“Mr. LaJoye, behalf of the subcommittee, I extend sincere condolences to the families and colleagues of those who lost their lives. I also reaffirm our continued support and appreciation for your workforce. We look forward to your candid and comprehensive assessment of how COVID has impacted TSA’s mission performance and what challenges you foresee for the agency as air travel – hopefully – begins to return to a more normal pattern. We also want to hear details on the deployment of advanced security technology, workforce pay initiatives, and how you are executing your fiscal year 2021 funding.
“I know you are limited in sharing details about TSA’s budget request for the coming year, but I hope we can still have a fulsome conversation about your priorities looking ahead.
“I would now like to turn to the distinguished gentleman from Tennessee, Ranking Member Fleischmann, for his opening remarks.”