TWIC continues rollout: feds won’t enforce card requirement for months

| 12/4/2007

Some drivers may take a little time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to catch up on some paperwork.

The federal government is more than happy to oblige them.

The Transportation Security Administration is continuing to open enrollment sites for the estimated 800,000 workers who will be required to have the Transportation Worker Identification Credential.

This week, TSA begins enrolling port workers at the Port of Mobile, AL and the Port of Brownsville, TX.

Also in December, TWIC enrollments will hit ports in Boston, MA; Charleston, SC; Cleveland, OH; Detroit, MI; Port Fourchon, LA; Hilo, HI; Indiana Harbor, IN; Albany, NY; Brunswick, GA; Long Beach and Los Angeles, CA; Milwaukee, WI; Philadelphia, PA; Seattle, WA; Tulsa, OK; Joliet, IL; Kansas City, MO; Kauai, HI; New York/New Jersey No. 1 and Peoria, IL.

A full list of the scheduled port enrollments is available on the TWIC Web site by clicking here. Also, TSA has set up a TWIC help desk available toll-free by phone at 1-866-DHS-TWIC.

The standard TWIC fee is $132.50. Workers with a current hazmat endorsement, a Merchant Mariner Document or a Free and Secure Trade credential may obtain a TWIC card for $105.25.

The government hasn’t set a specific time frame for when it will require workers at ports to show a TWIC card for access, although it doesn’t appear to be anytime soon.

Maurine Shields Fanguy, TWIC administrator for the Transportation Security Administration, told the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee in early October that TWIC enrollment would have to be open at all sites for several months before enforcement of the new credential would begin. The U.S. Coast Guard requires 90 days of notice, Fanguy said then.

TSA’s final list of ports scheduled to open enrollment centers includes New Castle, DE, Lafayette, LA and Sacramento, CA. Those ports are tentatively scheduled to begin enrollment between July and October 2008.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer