SIA Legislative Update: Why CFATS is Good for the Security Industry

One of the hottest topics in the government relations arena right now is the ongoing debate about how long and how much to regulate chemical facilities and those facilities that use chemicals which could make them vulnerable to terrorist attacks. The...

This is an opinion that enjoys widespread cross-industry support. For example, the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA) recently submitted a written statement supporting the existing CFATS regulations and further suggesting that they are effective and should be made permanent. The association’s statement was given to the House Committee on Homeland Security’s Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection and Security Technologies.

SIA also supports the Obama administration’s view that the current CFATS regulations should be extended to include safe drinking water facilities and waste water treatment facilities, which were not subject to regulation under the initial CFATS program. That represents a risky gap in coverage, since those facilities contain chemicals such as chlorine that could be used in a terrorist attack.

CFATS is an important and beneficial program for the security industry, and no matter what happens in the legislative debate, it is certain to continue to provide funding for security purchases and greater opportunities for those that provide those solutions.


Karyn Hodgson is communications manager for the Security Industry Association (SIA).