Transportation and Infrastructure

House to TSA: Hand over your loose change

The House will pass legislation next week that would require the Transportation Security Administration to spend all unclaimed money collected from airport security checkpoints on lounges for members of the military and their families.

The TSA Loose Change Act, H.R. 1095, was introduced by Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.) back in March. It has picked up 43 co-sponsors, including Republicans and Democrats.

{mosads}According to the House Homeland Security Committee, the TSA has collected an average of $465,000 per year in unclaimed money from security checkpoints across the country. Under current law, that money is to be used for civil aviation security.

But the committee has found that the TSA can be slow to spend the money for that purpose. In 2012, for example, the agency collected $531,000 in unclaimed funds, but as of March 2013, it had only spent $6,500 on security.

Miller’s bill would require the TSA to direct the money to groups that help fund airport lounges for the military, which the bill describes as “places of rest and recuperation” for the service members and their families.

Today, only the United Services Organizations is operating airport lounges for military service members and their families, but the bill asks the TSA to expand the number of groups providing these lounges.

The House could pass the bill as early as Monday, when it returns from the Thanksgiving break.


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