Airport Business letter to the editor …

In case you missed it; this story is worth repeating. – LdR
… from September/October 2011 AIRPORT BUSINESS …

LETTER TO THE EDITOR:
COMPETITION AND CREDENTIALING
I wanted set the record straight regarding an amendment Congresswoman Sheila
Jackson Lee (D-TX) offered at the markup of the draft TSA authorization which would
ensure that channeling services for airports were open for competition. It has come
to my attention that the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE), which
operates the Transportation Security Clearinghouse (the current channeling service
provider) alleges that Congresswoman Jackson Lee’s amendment would prohibit
the Transportation Security Clearinghouse from offering its channeling services to
airports and that Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) is in favor
of removing the Transportation Security Clearinghouse as an option for airports.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Ever since federal legislation and subsequent regulatory guidance issued by TSA
provided the Transportation Security Clearinghouse a monopoly on these services,
many of the ACI-NA member airports have been upset that we have no competition
for these services. For the four years I served on the ACI-NA executive committee I
heard from many airport members stating their support for increasing competition
for channeling services. During my tenure on the executive committee and since, I
know that ACI-NA’s position on this issue is to have competition for these services.

I have never heard ACI-NA or a single airport director advocate the Transportation
Security Clearinghouse should not be allowed to be part of that competition. In fact
just the opposite has been discussed and supported by all those I have talked to
regarding this matter. In May, I testified before the House Transportation Security
Subcommittee on its proposed credentialing bill.

Among other points, I testified that ACI-NA has been advocating for some time for the
TSA to allow airports choices between qualified vendors. All of my peers in the industry
with whom I have discussed this issue assume the Transportation Security Clearinghouse
will be one of those choices, and support such an outcome. This is not about excluding
a certain vendor from participating but about providing competition for this
mandated service we provide for ourselves and our tenants. ACI-NA and airport
directors are very aware of the value of competition. In our business we fight for
competition in airline service to our community for the benefit of our customers.

I cannot imagine anyone would find it surprising we would fight for competition for
this or any other service we need for our operations.
Randall H. Walker
Director of Aviation
Clark County (NV) Department of Aviation

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