The TAA’s Airport Security Office (ASO) is responsible for issuing airport identification badges to employees, tenants and sub-tenants of Tucson International Airport (TUS) who require airport identification to access restricted, secured or sterile areas. Badge issuance is limited to those who are employed or sponsored by a tenant of TUS; have a frequent and reoccurring need for access; and have cleared the FBI-based Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) and Security Threat Assessment (STA).
Employers or sponsors of new TUS employees begin the badge application process by providing the TAA’s ASO with the proper Work Authorization Form along with A $75 fee This fee will increase to $77 with the implementation of RAP Back, starting Jan. 2, 2020. The ASO personnel will provide applicants with required paperwork, as well as fingerprint applicants, and schedule required training.
The TAA’s ASO is in the center of Baggage Claim area on the lower level of the main terminal, immediately west of the center stairs.
- ASO Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays-Fridays, except holidays
- Phone: (520) 573-8156 during office hours; (520) 573-8182 after hours
RAP Back Program
The Tucson Airport Authority will soon begin using the RAP Back program for badging employees working at Tucson International Airport (TUS).
RAP Back is a program run by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that provides an additional element to the background checks currently required of anyone who is authorized to have unescorted access to secured areas of Tucson International Airport (TUS).
The name comes from:
The program provides the TUS Airport Security Office (ASO) with on-going status notifications of criminal history information changes for individuals who have submitted fingerprints as part of a Criminal Records History Check (CHRC), which is required to receive an access badge at TUS. One of the benefits of the program is that badge holders are no longer required to return to the ASO to re-submit fingerprints for updated vetting every two (2) years. At the same time, it improves security by allowing for the timely and reasonable revocation of badges of individuals when necessary due to certain confirmed criminal history. RAP Back does not eliminate the need for an expiration date on a badge.
FAQs About RAP Back
Will all TUS employees be required to participate in RAP Back?
Yes. All current TUS badge holders as well as new applicants are required to participate.
Are new work authorization forms required for RAP Back?
Yes. Current TUS badge holders will be required to submit new work authorization forms and applications when enrolling into the RAP Back program. These forms are provided by the badge holder’s authorized signatory.
Can new work authorization forms be provided to the ASO prior to actual enrollment?
Yes. The authorized signatory may provide the TUS ASO with the required form up to 30 days prior to the applicant coming into the office.
When will TUS begin enrolling badge holders into RAP Back?
A firm date has not been established, but it’s anticipated that enrollment will begin sometime after October 31, 2019, but before January 1, 2020.
When will I be enrolled in RAP Back?
Enrollment will be based on the expiration dates of current badge holders, once TUS is enrolled in the program and it becomes operational. It is anticipated that badge holders will go through the enrollment process the month preceding their current expiration date. The TUS ASO will notify badge holders and signatories of the schedule so that resources can be properly allocated for an efficient process.
Are there any fees associated with this new program?
Yes. The new costs have not been determined but TUS intends to minimize fee increases so stakeholders can make the proper budget adjustments. Just as with the current system, TUS is required to pay a fee for each Criminal History Records Check (CHRC) and Security Threat Assessment (STA). Additionally, there is a one-time $7.00 fee for participation in RAP Back. Certain fees beyond the control of TUS that were increased in late 2018 but not passed on to badge holders or their companies will also be included.
How are badge fees determined?
TUS badge costs will be based solely on the cost of card stock, printing costs, labor, fees charged to participate in RAP Back, and the costs charged to TUS for a Criminal History Records Check and Security Threat Assessment.
Will badge holders still have to renew their badges under RAP Back?
Yes. Although RAP Back continually monitors badge holders, the Transportation Security Administration requires an expiration date every two years so that badges can be accounted for, validated and employment status can be confirmed. Renewals require a new work authorization form and updated contact information. There will be no need to re-submit fingerprints for review. There will be a renewal fee but the cost will be reduced under the RAP Back program.
What if my current badge is due to expire before RAP Back starts, will I have to renew it?
Yes. Badges due to expire before TUS begins enrolling holders into RAP Back will have to be renewed under the existing requirements, which include a work authorization form, submission of new fingerprints and payment of fees. Unfortunately there is no mechanism for a transition phase.
Under RAP Back, will a person’s badge automatically be suspended or revoked if criminal activity is discovered?
RAP Back provides notice to TUS regarding new criminal activity which includes documented interactions with any law enforcement agency or court where a person’s fingerprints are submitted. Once TUS receives notice of the interaction, the circumstances will be immediately evaluated by the Airport Security Coordinator. Any badge suspension or revocation will follow TSA regulations regarding disqualifiers outlined in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). In cases where a person’s access is suspended while a disposition is being determined, the badge holder cannot be allowed or escorted into a secured or Air Operations Areas (AOA).
Should a badge be suspended or revoked due to criminal activity, the type of criminal activity, cannot be shared with the badge holder’s employer. Disqualifying convictions are outlined in the current TUS badge work authorization form.
If I leave my job and then later get a new one with the same or a different company, do I have to go through the whole process again?
Yes. Once a badge holder ends employment, that person is un-subscribed to the RAP Back program. To obtain a badge in the future an employee must be re-subscribed and pay the associated fees. RAP Back does allow for a short grace period during which a person can re-subscribe without a subscription fee but actual badging fees and processes may still be assessed. It remains the responsibility of the badge signatory to notify the TUS ASO immediately during business hours or the TUS Airport Communications Center during non-business hours so the badge holder’s access can be deactivated. The badge must be surrendered to the ASO during normal business hours or an on-duty Tucson Airport Authority Police Department (TAAPD) officer during non-business hours.
Who may I contact with any additional questions?
Please contact the TUS ASO at (520) 573-8156.