(BIG SANDY, Mont.) - Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released its review of the federal workforce security clearance process:
"Too many folks have access to our nation's most sensitive information. It's why I'm working to hold people accountable who intentionally compromise the integrity of a background investigation. I will remain vigilant to ensure Congress and the Administration follow through with efforts to protect our nation's secrets."
Tester's bipartisan Security Clearance Accountability, Reform, and Enhancement Act requires federal agencies to work with Congress to determine which positions ultimately require a security clearance. The bill requires that a review would occur every five years.
Today's OMB report shows that five million people have security clearances, a number that Tester believes is too high. That report can be found online here.
Tester also added language to a recent national defense funding bill that would ensure that local, state and federal agencies do a better job sharing information when assessing the suitability of individuals to receive security clearances.
Congress recently passed Tester's SCORE Act into law allowing the Inspector General of the Office of Personnel Management to use the agency's $2 billion Revolving Fund to more thoroughly investigate cases where the integrity of the background check process may have been compromised.
Tester's bipartisan security clearance bill is cosponsored by Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.).