House Passes Bill Reauthorizing Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS)


The House of Representatives on July 8, 2014, passed by voice vote H.R. 4007, legislation that reestablishes the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program. Under CFATS, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is required to: establish risk-based performance standards designed to protect covered chemical facilities from acts of terrorism; require such facilities to submit security vulnerability assessments and develop and implement site security plans; review and approve or disapprove each such assessment and plan; arrange for the audit and inspection of covered chemical facilities to determine compliance; and notify, and issue an order to comply to, the owner or operator of a facility not in compliance. The legislation is based on feedback the House Homeland Security Committee and the House Committee on Energy and Commerce received through meetings with industry stakeholders, the regulated community, first responders, union representatives, the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, and the Department of Homeland Security itself. Supporters of H.R. 4007 believe the bill improves the CFATS program by greatly improving coordination and communication between DHS and the owners and operators of chemical facilities. They also claim that the bill will enhance information sharing with first responders and that it creates a more workable employee-screening methodology, that allows facility owners and operators to implement procedures that ensure maximum security. The bill also expands the scope of the CFATS program to ensure that there are no “outlier” chemical facilities that remain unknown to and unregulated by DHS.


Topics:  CFATS, DHS, Legislative Agendas, New Legislation

Published In: General Business Updates, Elections & Politics Updates, Environmental Updates, Science, Computers & Technology Updates

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