Tuesday, February 23, 2010
DHS CFATS Webinar
As I reminded people last week, DHS had their CFATS Update Webinar on Monday afternoon. Sue Armstrong, the Acting Deputy Director for Infrastructure Protection, provided a solid over-view of the CFATS process and provided information on the current status of the implementation of the program. RBPS 12 Tool Ms Armstrong did announce that there would be a 30-day comment notice posted in the Federal Register in the coming weeks requesting further comments on the planned Personnel Surety Portal that DHS will be adding to the Chemical Security Assessment Tool (CSAT). Comments received in the earlier 60-day comment period have been used to modify the proposal. The tool will provide high-risk facilities with the capability of submitting names to DHS to have them checked against the Terrorist Screening Data Base (TSDB). This will help facilities fulfill part of the RBPS #12 requirements. Initial SSP Inspections Because of the snowy weather earlier this month, ISCD is behind on the schedule for conducting SSP validation inspections. The first two proof-of-concept inspections are underway. Armstrong did note that facilities can expect the inspections to take about a week to complete and there will be at least two inspectors, perhaps more, depending on the size of the facility. DHS currently only plans on getting through Tier 1 facilities in FY 2010. Final Tier Notifications DHS is continuing to complete reviews of submitted SVA’s. They are sending out about 500 final Tiering letters (the notification necessary to start the SSP process) each month, mainly to Tier 4 facilities now. They expect to have the initial final tier notifications completed this summer. Chemical Facility Inspectors DHS is continuing to higher more inspectors so the rate of inspections should continue to increase over time. The next class of the Chemical Security Academy (class 5) will graduate on April 8th. DHS just closed one series of job applications and expects to select the attendees for the next CSA class from the over 1000 applications received. The next job announcement will appear on USAJobs.gov later this spring or early summer. CFATS Legislation Ms. Armstrong announced that the Department expects to provide testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Operations Committee on March 3rd about pending CFATS legislation. It was not clear from her comments whether the hearing would focus on just HR 2868, S 2996, or both. An archived version of this webinar will be available soon on the CIKR Learning Series web page. When it is, I’ll pass along the word of its posting. I certainly recommend that facility security managers listed to the one hour presentation as soon as practical.