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Fri, Jul 04, 2003

Upgraded: Three TSA Officials

They Left

The Washington Post noted, "Two top security officials in charge of overseeing background checks of federal airport screeners left their posts last week, the Transportation Security Administration said yesterday, underscoring troubles afflicting a division that has been criticized for letting criminals slip into its ranks."

One was the capo of the new office of Credentialing, Bruce Brotman; the other was Richard Ferris, the director of TSA's Personnel Security Office. Regardless that Brotman's office is a recent (May) creation; with his leaving, "for personal reasons," that office, and Ferris's, were recombined into one bigger bureaucracy, now to be headed by former TSA strategic analyst Justin Oberman. The reasons Ferris, who has, since May, reported to Brotman, left were not disclosed.

 The vetting, testing, and credentialing of TSA's screeners (particularly) has recently been nothing but an embarrassment to James Loy and his minions; Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, who inherited the entire TSA tar baby from DoT Secretary Mineta, cannot be pleased that the TSA is so publicly embarrassed, either. Ridge's Inspector General has been dispatched to see what he can do to make things better.

Although tens of thousands of TSA screeners have been on the hob for a year or more, their background checks need not be finished until October 1. The TSA recently sent home over 1200 screeners who didn't pass, but who were working, anyway.

The third TSA official to announce he was leaving, Scott McHugh, was last seen blowing a whistle about the TSA's inept luggage security. His reasons for leaving, as well, were not disclosed publicly.

A couple weeks ago, TSA spokeswoman Heather Rosenker (wife of NTSB vice Chair Mark Rosenker), voluntarily left, as well, to work for a DC-area law firm.

FMI: www.tsa.gov

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