Hudson Joins Katko to Introduce Cuban Airport Security Act

July 12, 2016
Hudson Joins Katko to Introduce Cuban Airport Security Act
WASHINGTON, D.C. –  Today, U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) joined Rep. John Katko (NY-24), Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul (TX-10), and Rep. Henry Cuellar (TX-28) to introduce the bipartisan Cuban Airport Security Act of 2016 (H.R. 5728) to prohibit scheduled passenger air transportation between the United States and Cuba until a study has been completed regarding security measures and equipment at Cuba’s airports.
“As far as we know, there will be daily flights coming into Charlotte from Cuban airports that don’t have proper screening or explosive detection, that can’t check for fake passports or IDs, that lack TSA on the ground, and that don’t have Air Marshals on planes,” said Rep. Hudson. “How can this administration guarantee the American people there won't be a security threat on one of those planes? Today’s legislation will effectively put the brakes on this dangerous plan until we are absolutely sure there are proper measures in place to protect the safety and security of Americans.”
To watch Rep. Hudson’s remarks in support of the Cuban Airport Security Act, click here.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) tentatively selected eight U.S. airlines to begin scheduled flights between the United States and Cuba in ten cities, including Charlotte, North Carolina. However, the Obama Administration and the government of Cuba have continually stonewalled proper oversight and hid details of airport security arrangements.
Last month, the Cuban government blocked a congressional delegation from visiting the country to inspect airport security. This is a country that has been a safe haven for terrorists and was only removed from the list of state sponsors of terrorism about a year ago. The lack of transparency to the American people is troubling and begs the question: Are they concealing something or simply negligent to the glaring security inadequacies?
Because they have grave concerns about security at Cuban airports, Transportation Security Subcommittee Chairman Katko, Rep. Hudson, Chairman McCaul and Rep. Cuellar introduced the Cuban Airport Security Act. Rep. Hudson served as Chairman of the Transportation Security Subcommittee in the 113th Congress.
Specifically, the Cuban Airport Security Act would halt regularly scheduled commercial air service between the U.S. and Cuba until:
  • TSA provides a report to Congress detailing security measures at all of Cuba’s ten international airports;
  • The Government Accountability Office conducts an independent audit of TSA’s report to Congress;
  • An agreement is executed between the U.S. and Cuban governments to allow the Federal Air Marshal service to authorize missions on flights between the U.S. and Cuba; and
  • An agreement is signed between the U.S. and Cuba to allow TSA inspectors full access to Cuban Last Point of Departure airports to conduct thorough security assessments.
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