Airport Security Lines May Grow Again, TSA Cautions

by Cheryl Rosen
Airport Security Lines May Grow Again, TSA Cautions

They were the worst of lines, and then they were the best of lines. But they might go back to being be bad again soon.

Many of the extra staffers brought on board to cut down on the unprecedented security lines that jammed airports in early summer will have to be let go on October 1 unless more funding comes his way, TSA Chief Peter Neffenger said at the Airlines for America Industry Summit in Washington D.C. last week.

The cuts would come as the 2017 fiscal year kicks in on October 1st.

The shorter lines the public now sees at airports come at the expense of the TSA, which is footing the bill for increased staffing. Neffenger said that unless Congress expands his funding, the new staffers will “all go home on October 1st.” But he did report that the agency is getting “good signals” and “strong support” from the Obama administration.

Neffenger said TSA hired 1,400 new security officers and upgraded 2,000 part-time staff to full-time in response to staggeringly long lines that had travelers missing their flights—and both the public and the airlines complaining—this spring.

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