ORLANDO, Fla. (FOX 35 WOFL) - The fight over airport security is heating up at the Orlando International Airport.
The Orange County government is looking to get rid of the TSA and hire private contractors to operate the airport's security measures. The TSA will still oversee the security of the airport, but the actual agents and screeners will be private contractors if the vote goes through.
Supports of the TSA do not want this and say that the TSA is doing a good job. Last year, the Orlando International Airport ranked seventh in the nation when it comes to guns and other contraband. Security agents discovered 94 firearms at checkpoints and 81 of those guns were loaded.
Fox 35 Reporter Matt Trezza was at the airport this morning and reports that this move is all about money. The TSA said that hiring private security would be less expensive than using their own people for the job.
Matt Trezza says that the union is dead set against this and will be picketing the Orange County government buildings and will call for the mayor to vote down the measure.
However, if the vote moves ahead, TSA workers will still be offered other opportunities. Carolyn Dorgham of the TSA says that they will have the option to transition to another TSA screened airport, if they wish to do so and if the positions are available. TSA agents can also elect to transition to another federal agency or go into private screening with the contractor. And if they are there in their career, they can choose to retire as well.
If the vote does move ahead with the private security contractors, the Orlando International Airport will be the largest airport in the country to do so.
The board will meet Wednesday, February 21st, to decide on this.