49 U.S.C. § 44936 - U.S. Code - Unannotated Title 49. Transportation § 44936. Employment investigations and restrictions

(a) Employment investigation requirement.--(1)(A)  The Under Secretary of Transportation for Security shall require by regulation that an employment investigation, including a criminal history record check and a review of available law enforcement data bases and records of other governmental and international agencies to the extent determined practicable by the Under Secretary of Transportation for Transportation Security,,  1 shall be conducted of each individual employed in, or applying for, a position as a security screener under section 44935(e) or a position in which the individual has unescorted access, or may permit other individuals to have unescorted access, to--

(i)  aircraft of an air carrier or foreign air carrier;  or

(ii)  a secured area of an airport in the United States the Under Secretary designates that serves an air carrier or foreign air carrier.

(B)  The Under Secretary shall require by regulation that an employment investigation (including a criminal history record check and a review of available law enforcement data bases and records of other governmental and international agencies to the extent determined practicable by the Under Secretary of Transportation for Transportation Security) be conducted for--

(i)  individuals who are responsible for screening passengers or property under section 44901 of this title;

(ii)  supervisors of the individuals described in clause (i);

(iii)  individuals who regularly have escorted access to aircraft of an air carrier or foreign air carrier or a secured area of an airport in the United States the Administrator designates that serves an air carrier or foreign air carrier;  and

(iv)  such other individuals who exercise security functions associated with baggage or cargo, as the Under Secretary determines is necessary to ensure air transportation security.

(C) Background checks of current employees.--

(i)  A new background check (including a criminal history record check and a review of available law enforcement data bases and records of other governmental and international agencies to the extent determined practicable by the Under Secretary of Transportation for Transportation Security shall be required for any individual who is employed in a position described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) on the date of enactment of the Aviation and Transportation Security Act.

(ii)  The Under Secretary may provide by order (without regard to the provisions of chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code) for a phased-in implementation of the requirements of this subparagraph.

(D) Exemption.--  An employment investigation, including a criminal history record check, shall not be required under this subsection for an individual who is exempted under section 107.31(m)(1) or (2) of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, as in effect on November 22, 2000.  The Under Secretary shall work with the International Civil Aviation Organization and with appropriate authorities of foreign countries to ensure that individuals exempted under this subparagraph do not pose a threat to aviation or national security.

(2)  An air carrier, foreign air carrier, airport operator, or government that employs, or authorizes or makes a contract for the services of, an individual in a position described in paragraph (1) of this subsection shall ensure that the investigation the Under Secretary requires is conducted.

(3)  The Under Secretary shall provide for the periodic audit of the effectiveness of criminal history record checks conducted under paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(b) Prohibited employment.--(1)  Except as provided in paragraph (3) of this subsection, an air carrier, foreign air carrier, airport operator, or government may not employ, or authorize or make a contract for the services of, an individual in a position described in subsection (a)(1) of this section if--

(A)  the investigation of the individual required under this section has not been conducted;  or

(B)  the results of that investigation establish that, in the 10-year period ending on the date of the investigation, the individual was convicted (or found not guilty by reason of insanity) of--

(i)  a crime referred to in section 46306 , 46308 , 46312 , 46314 , or 46315 or chapter 465 of this title or section 32 of title 18 ;

(ii)  murder;

(iii)  assault with intent to murder;

(iv)  espionage;

(v)  sedition;

(vi)  treason;

(vii)  rape;

(viii)  kidnapping;

(ix)  unlawful possession, sale, distribution, or manufacture of an explosive or weapon;

(x)  extortion;

(xi)  armed or felony unarmed robbery;

(xii)  distribution of, or intent to distribute, a controlled substance;

(xiii)  a felony involving a threat;

(xiv)  a felony involving--

(I)  willful destruction of property;

(II)  importation or manufacture of a controlled substance;

(III)  burglary;

(IV)  theft;

(V)  dishonesty, fraud, or misrepresentation;

(VI)  possession or distribution of stolen property;

(VII)  aggravated assault;

(VIII)  bribery;  and

(IX)  illegal possession of a controlled substance punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of more than 1 year, or any other crime classified as a felony that the Under Secretary determines indicates a propensity for placing contraband aboard an aircraft in return for money;  or

(xv)  conspiracy to commit any of the acts referred to in clauses (i) through (xiv).

(2)  The Under Secretary may specify other factors that are sufficient to prohibit the employment of an individual in a position described in subsection (a)(1) of this section.

(3)  An air carrier, foreign air carrier, airport operator, or government may employ, or authorize or contract for the services of, an individual in a position described in subsection (a)(1) of this section without carrying out the investigation required under this section, if the Under Secretary approves a plan to employ the individual that provides alternate security arrangements.

(c) Fingerprinting and record check information.--(1)  If the Under Secretary requires an identification and criminal history record check, to be conducted by the Attorney General, as part of an investigation under this section, the Under Secretary shall designate an individual to obtain fingerprints and submit those fingerprints to the Attorney General.  The Attorney General may make the results of a check available to an individual the Under Secretary designates.  Before designating an individual to obtain and submit fingerprints or receive results of a check, the Under Secretary shall consult with the Attorney General.  All Federal agencies shall cooperate with the Under Secretary and the Under Secretary's designee in the process of collecting and submitting fingerprints.

(2)  The Under Secretary shall prescribe regulations on--

(A)  procedures for taking fingerprints;  and

(B)  requirements for using information received from the Attorney General under paragraph (1) of this subsection--

(i)  to limit the dissemination of the information;  and

(ii)  to ensure that the information is used only to carry out this section.

(3)  If an identification and criminal history record check is conducted as part of an investigation of an individual under this section, the individual--

(A)  shall receive a copy of any record received from the Attorney General;  and

(B)  may complete and correct the information contained in the check before a final employment decision is made based on the check.

(d) Fees and charges. --The Under Secretary and the Attorney General shall establish reasonable fees and charges to pay expenses incurred in carrying out this section.  The employer of the individual being investigated shall pay the costs of a record check of the individual.  Money collected under this section shall be credited to the account in the Treasury from which the expenses were incurred and are available to the Under Secretary and the Attorney General for those expenses.

(e) When investigation or record check not required. --This section does not require an investigation or record check when the investigation or record check is prohibited by a law of a foreign country.

1 So in original.

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