This week, President Trump signed S. 4148, a three-year extension of the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standards Program, which sets security requirements for chemical and energy facilities across the country. The three-year extension will renew the existing program requirements through July 27, 2023.
In recent years, the CFATS program had become a political football in Congress and was subject to a number of short-term extensions. The majority in both chambers looked to shape the future of the program through vastly differing viewpoints. House Democrats introduced several legislative proposals that would have increased the compliance burden on many industries regulated by the program. Conversely, Senate Republicans threatened to defund the program entirely, which would have created significant uncertainty around security requirements at CFATS facilities.
Throughout the recent reauthorization efforts, NPGA engaged Congressional stakeholders and Administration officials at the Department of Homeland Security in an attempt to lessen the burden of the CFATS program on the propane industry and its customers. Given the political landscape in Congress, there was not an opportunity to modify the program beyond the existing requirements nor was there an appetite to do so from the legislators’ perspective. NPGA is planning to meet with DHS officials to further discuss opportunities to modify the threshold quantities and the agency’s approach to its regulation of the propane industry.
For more information about CFATS, and NPGA’s advocacy efforts in this space, please contact Tyler Lawrence, NPGA’s Manager of Legislative Affairs.