Screening Partnership Program
On February 14, 2012, the President signed the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, which outlines additional TSA requirements related to the approval of SPP Airport applications. The Act states that TSA shall approve an airport’s application to participate in SPP if approval will not compromise security, detrimentally affect cost efficiency, or detrimentally affect screening effectiveness of passengers or property.
Are you an individual looking to join one of our private screening partners?
The information and application on this page is for airports wishing to participate in the Screening Partnership Program. If you are an individual looking to join one of our private screening partners or TSA, then please visit Employment Opportunities with Our Private-Sector Screening Partners or our careers page.
Airport Application Instructions
This application notifies the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) of an airport’s intent to participate in the Screening Partnership Program (SPP). Airport operators may submit this application at any time.
Privatized screening is important to TSA’s mission and has existed since TSA’s creation under 49 U.S.C. §44920, first enacted by the Aviation Transportation Security Act of 2001 (ATSA) P. L. 107-71. The SPP provides airports with a process to “opt-out” of federally provided security screening services and request TSA to use private security screening companies. The FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 amended 49 U.S.C. §44920, further defining TSA’s responsibilities with regard to the evaluation and determination of privatized airport screening applications. TSA is required to approve an airport’s application unless approval would compromise security or be detrimental to the cost-efficiency or the effectiveness of screening at the airport. The TSA will approve or deny an application within 120 days after receiving a complete application. If an application is denied, the applicant will receive the findings that served as the basis for the denial, the results of any analysis conducted, and recommendations on how the airport operator can address reasons for the denial within 60 days of the decision.
Approval of this application does not guarantee that a contract for private security screening will be awarded at the airport. TSA will only award a contract if the source selection process yields a qualified company that will provide security screening services using a technical approach consistent with TSA standards, at a price that will not negatively impact the TSA budget. Procurements for security screening services are being structured to meet these objectives.
TSA procures all solicitations for security screening services in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). Airports accepted to participate in SPP following a contract award must transition to the private security screening company selected.
- A separate application must be submitted for each individual airport location.
- An authorized representative of the airport or the airport owner must execute the application.
- The requisite application documentation must be fully complete to be considered by TSA. Incomplete applications will delay the process.
- Responses are required for questions 1, 2, 3, and 4. Failure to provide responses to these questions will delay the application processing until answers are received.
- Responses to questions 5, 6, and 7 are optional. The application will be processed within 120 days regardless of whether a response is provided.
- Responses to question 7 should include any information the applicant feels is important. The TSA has no specific expectations of the information an airport could provide that may be pertinent. This information may be used as part of the overall decision. Importantly, if approved this information may serve as a basis for procurement requirements. Examples of information TSA has found useful are listed below:
- Specific insurance requirements for contractors operating on airport property;
- Long term plans for the airport not discussed in the response to question 3, or requiring more information. (I.e. a major terminal rebuilding effort spanning many years);
- Specific local or state laws applicable to a private company, but not applicable to the Federal government. (I.e. when a private company rents airport space local regulations may require the company to provide insurance benefits that would not be required if the Federal government leased the space);
- Expectations of major future changes in flight schedules or passenger loads;
- Ideas that may result in lower costs or improved operations, thereby benefitting the Federal government. (I.e. Airport information that may assist a company to attract candidates in hard-to-hire locations)
- Responses will be used in the following manner:
- Question 1 will shape the TSA’s acquisition strategy. The TSA will conduct a “full and open” competition if the response is “yes.” The TSA may conduct either a “full and open” competition or limit competition to small business concerns, as warranted, if the response is “no.” NOTE: The airport operator is advised that if it chooses to compete for the contract, it is possible that contract award may be made to another vendor. TSA may review any subsequent request from the airport operator to “opt-in” for federal workforce screening, but may choose to proceed with the contract award issued as a result of the application. Submission of the application serves as acknowledgement of this advisory.
- Question 2 is required by 49 U.S.C. 44920. The TSA will use the recommendation to develop cost estimates based on SPP’s experience with that company. There is no impact to an application if SPP has no experience with the company. Please note, the TSA will not contract with the recommended company based solely on the recommendation. All awards are made in accordance with the FAR.
- Question 3 may inform TSA’s acquisition strategy, though there are no specific actions TSA will or will not take depending on the response provided.
- Question 4 may inform TSA’s requirements for procurement of screening services. Additionally, the response will be used in the approval process, though there are no specific impacts to the approval or denial of an application dependent on the response provided.
- Question 5 will be used to further TSA’s analysis of whether the application would compromise security at the airport. This response is optional and not providing a response will not affect the application decision. The TSA has no specific expectations of the information an airport could provide to this question. This question allows the airport to add its voice to the application process.
- Question 6 will be used to further TSA’s analysis of whether the application would detrimentally affect cost or screening efficiency at the airport. This response is optional and not providing a response will not affect the application decision. The TSA has no specific expectations of the information an airport could provide to this question. This question allows the airport to add its voice to the application process.
- Question 7 will be used to further TSA’s understanding of the overall application and airport environment. There are no specific impacts to the application decision regardless of the information provided.
- The application must be received at TSA Screening Partnership Program. (See Application Process Information.)
- Please provide a copy of your application to the Federal Security Director (FSD) for your airport.
- If your application includes Sensitive Security Information (SSI) or confidential business information, please indicate in writing so that the information will be protected from public disclosure as appropriate. Further information regarding TSA policies and procedures for safeguarding and control of SSI is available at www.tsa.gov/SSI.
- The submission of the application is the first step in the process for acquiring private screening at the airport. TSA will evaluate the application in accordance with the criteria specified in section 44920 of Title 49, United States Code. If the application is approved, any potential contract resulting from the submission of the application will be awarded and administered by TSA in accordance with the Competition in Contracting Act and the Federal Acquisition Regulation.
APPLICATION PROCESS INFORMATION
The application can be submitted at any time, it is open enrollment. To download a copy of the Screening Partnership Program Application from the TSA website, please visit the following link: www.tsa.gov/SPPA.
If completing the application electronically, be sure to save this data file locally with a unique name before-e-mailing the application. The application can be submitted by several different methods, all shown below.
For more information concerning the process by which TSA approves or denies an application, please review the SPP Application Evaluation Process Overview presentation posted in the SPP program application portion of the TSA Web site. You can also access the presentation through the following link: www.TSA.gov/Application Evaluation Process Overview
- Electronic submissions (electronic mail / e-mail):
- Paper submissions: Send the original signed copy of the application to this address:
- All submissions sent by mail are vetted through a USPS processing center, which will delay receipt at TSA. We recommend also submitting your application via e-mail or fax.
Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
Attn: Screening Partnership Program (SPP)
601 South 12th Street, c/o E9-145S (TSA-29)
Arlington, VA 20598-6029
- Facsimile submission:
- Submit application to the following e-fax number (571) 227-1941
- Application assistance:
- To obtain telephone assistance regarding the application contact (571) 227-1861