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Beth Cobert: Performance Accountability Council Recommends Clearance Process Changes

Beth Cobert
Beth Cobert

Beth Cobert from the Office of Management and Budget has detailed the Suitability and Security Clearance Performance Accountability Council’s recommendations on how to modify clearance process for federal employees and contractors.

Cobert, chair of the interagency council and OMB deputy director for management, writes in a post published Tuesday that PAC’s 120-Day Suitability and Security Report focused on the frequency of evaluation and background checks, access to criminal and classified records, investigation quality and cross-agency efforts.

The council’s suggestions for these areas are based on risk and vulnerability reviews done by the Defense Department, Office of Personnel Management, Office of the Director of National Intelligence and other agencies following last year’s shooting at the Washington Navy Yard.

PAC’s 13 key recommendations include continuous evaluation, a five-year reinvestigation requirement for employees of all access levels, access for background investigators to public records and information sharing across law enforcement agencies.

Cobert also said PAC recommends National Training Standards for investigators and natural security and suitability adjudicators and a review of eligibility to access classified data and the Cross-Agency Priority Goal, which covers eight subgoals that address security clearance and insider threat.

“We will continue to work aggressively to ensure rigorous oversight and accountability mechanisms are in place throughout government, thereby ensuring the safety of federal workers and the protection of our nation’s most sensitive information,” Cobert says.

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