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Highlights

After the events of September 11, 2001, concerns were raised over the security of U.S. ports and waterways. In response to the concerns over port security, Congress passed the Maritime Transportation Security Act in November 2002. The act created a broad range of programs to improve the security conditions at the ports and along American waterways, such as identifying and tracking vessels, assessing security preparedness, and limiting access to sensitive areas. A number of executive agencies were delegated responsibilities to implement these programs and other provisions of the act. The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation asked GAO to conduct a review of the status of the agencies' efforts to implement the security requirements of the act. This testimony reflects GAO's preliminary findings; much of GAO's work in the area is still under way.

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