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51 owners, port operators, security personnel, and others as HME, where a cost reduction is applied to applicants already appropriate. Because of the number of stakeholders involved, holding a CDL-HME when they apply for the TWIC. There are it is necessary to view potential solutions from organizational, restrictions on this agreement; however, it provides a starting technical, and personal perspectives. Issues within each per- point. Ultimately, this system of reciprocity could be extended spective are not mutually exclusive and may require analysis to the majority of credentials identified here. from a holistic perspective. Additionally, because of the com- A system where background check processes are standard- plexities associated with the development of a new credential ized could reduce cost due to increased efficiency. Multi-agency and the multi-jurisdictional nature of current credentialing data sharing could also streamline the process for all stakehold- systems, the authority for a new credentialing policy may need ers. This system would require that the results of a credential to come from a source above the agencies (i.e., executive order application be applicable to a secondary credential application or legislation). Congressional and executive sources may be regarding the background investigation. As is currently the case, able to facilitate the diverse interest in a manner that will ensure it would likely require the expiration of any subsequent creden- the successful implementation of a consolidated security tials to coincide with the time limit of applicability associated credential. with the first credential. That is, if an applicant is granted a TWIC in 2010, and then applies for a FAST card in 2012 using the background check from the TWIC application, the FAST Consolidating Background-Check card would also expire in 2015. Initially, this could cause some Processes issues with increased renewal processing demands due to In addition to the potential consolidation of security cre- renewal periods less than the standard. However, over time dentials for persons who transport hazardous materials, this this should save money as alignment and efficiency occur. research also evaluated the possibility of consolidating back- ground check processes. The analyses also demonstrated that Future Research several security credentials required for HazMat transport have background assessment redundancies that could be eval- Based on the results of this research, the research team rec- uated for possible elimination; these include FAST, NEXUS, ommends a full cost-benefit analysis regarding the consolida- SENTRI, CDL-HME, MMC, and passport, in addition to the tion of the credentials named above. This information is five credentials considered as candidates for consolidation. imperative in order to fully understand the effect of changing There is strong evidence that the background check processes the system to reflect consolidation. Furthermore, this infor- for these credentials could be standardized and applicable mation can provide an avenue of comparison for consolidation across all transportation modes.(2) As shown in Table 3-3, 10 of the credentials versus a consolidation of the background of the 11 credentials identified shared both a fingerprint back- investigation processes. ground check (i.e., required for all but the passport) and a The research team also recommends a separate effort to name-based background check (i.e., required for all but the focus entirely on consolidation of the background checks (the USPS). In some cases there are minor variations in how these entire vetting process) for all credentials specific to transporta- processes are completed or which databases are checked; how- tion of hazardous materials. This appears to be a beneficial ever, the overall processes are extremely similar. More impor- middle ground that provides the most benefits for the great- tantly, the objective of these background checks (i.e., identifying est number of stakeholders. This evaluation should carefully any disqualifying offenses) is the same for all credentials. consider which credentials are viable options and which cre- The premise for this research was concern over the redun- dentials are peripheral in nature. This research could result dancies of the security credentialing system for persons who in intermediate change providing a real, positive impact to transport hazardous materials. Based on the research, it is stakeholders while progressing toward an ultimate solution, apparent that consolidation of existing credentials requires should one exist. significant change to the current security credentialing system Although it is feasible to consolidate some credentials based and could meet with organizational or institutional resistance. on currently available data, an effort needs to be implemented It is believed that the consolidation of background checks at the federal level with input from stakeholders at all levels. would deal largely with the application process, and would be The most important next step is to identify the specific cost transparent to the end user. An example of acceptance for data associated with the security credential consolidation other credential vetting processes would be the TWIC and the process.