(a) In general
The Secretary, acting through the Administrator of the Transportation Security Administration, may develop Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response (referred to in this section as "VIPR") teams to augment the security of any mode of transportation at any location within the United States. In forming a VIPR team, the Secretary—
(1) may use any asset of the Department, including Federal air marshals, surface transportation security inspectors, canine detection teams, and advanced screening technology;
(2) may determine when a VIPR team shall be deployed, as well as the duration of the deployment;
(3) shall, prior to and during the deployment, consult with local security and law enforcement officials in the jurisdiction where the VIPR team is or will be deployed, to develop and agree upon the appropriate operational protocols and provide relevant information about the mission of the VIPR team, as appropriate;
(4) shall, prior to and during the deployment, consult with all transportation entities directly affected by the deployment of a VIPR team as to specific locations and times within the facilities of such entities at which VIPR teams are to be deployed to maximize the effectiveness of such deployment, as appropriate, including railroad carriers, air carriers, airport owners, over-the-road bus operators and terminal owners and operators, motor carriers, public transportation agencies, owners or operators of highways, port operators and facility owners, vessel owners and operators and pipeline operators; and
(5) shall require, as appropriate based on risk, in the case of a VIPR team deployed to an airport, that the VIPR team conduct operations—
(A) in the sterile area and any other areas to which only individuals issued security credentials have unescorted access; and
(B) in nonsterile areas.
(b) Performance measures
Not later than 1 year after October 5, 2018, the Administrator shall develop and implement a system of qualitative performance measures and objectives by which to assess the roles, activities, and effectiveness of VIPR team operations on an ongoing basis, including a mechanism through which the transportation entities referred to in subsection (a)(4) may submit feedback on VIPR team operations involving their systems or facilities.
Not later than 1 year after October 5, 2018, the Administrator shall develop and implement a plan for ensuring the interoperability of communications among VIPR team participants and between VIPR teams and any transportation entities with systems or facilities that are involved in VIPR team operations. Such plan shall include an analysis of the costs and resources required to carry out such plan.
AMENDMENTS 2018—Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 115–254, §1968(b)(1), substituted "team as to specific locations and times within the facilities of such entities at which VIPR teams are to be deployed to maximize the effectiveness of such deployment," for "team,". Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 115–254, §1968(b)(2), added subsec. (b) and struck out former subsec. (b). Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary to carry out this section such sums as necessary, including funds to develop not more than 60 VIPR teams, for fiscal years 2016 through 2018." Pub. L. 115–254, §1930(b), which directed amendment of "section 1303(b) of the National Transit Systems Security Act of 2007 (6 U.S.C. 1112(b))" by substituting "such sums as necessary, including funds to develop at least 30, but not more than 60, VIPR teams, for fiscal years 2019 through 2021" for "to the extent appropriated, including funds to develop not more than 60 VIPR teams, for fiscal years 2016 through 2018", could not be executed to this section, which is section 1303(b) of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007, because the words to be substituted for did not appear. Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 115–254, §1968(b)(2), added subsec. (c). 2016—Subsec. (a)(5). Pub. L. 114–190, §3601(1), added par. (5). Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 114–190, §3601(2), substituted "such sums as necessary, including funds to develop not more than 60 VIPR teams, for fiscal years 2016 through 2018" for "such sums as necessary for fiscal years 2007 through 2011".VIPR TEAM STATISTICS Pub. L. 115–254, div. K, title I, §1930(a), Oct. 5, 2018, 132 Stat. 3568, provided that: "(1) In general.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 5, 2018], and annually thereafter, the Administrator [of the Transportation Security Administration] shall notify the appropriate committees of Congress [Committees on Commerce, Science and Transportation and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and Committee on Homeland Security of the House of Representatives] of the number of VIPR teams available for deployment at transportation facilities, including— "(A) the number of VIPR team operations that include explosive detection canine teams; and "(B) the distribution of VIPR team operations deployed across different modes of transportation. "(2) Annex.—The notification under paragraph (1) may contain a classified annex. "(3) Definition of vipr team.—In this subsection, the term ‘VIPR’ means a Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response team authorized under section 1303 of the National Transit Systems Security Act of 2007 [probably means section 1303 of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007] (6 U.S.C. 1112)." [For definition of "explosive detection canine teams" as used in section 1930(a) of Pub. L. 115–254, set out above, see section 1902 of Pub. L. 115–254, set out as a note under section 101 of Title 49, Transportation.]
6 U.S.C. § 1112 (2018)