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TSA adds personnel to Newark Airport amid shutdown

January 18, 2019 - 7:14 pm
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ATLANTA (AP) -- Federal officials are sending extra security screeners to beef up staffing at checkpoints at Newark Liberty International Airport.

A Transportation Security Administration spokesman confirmed the move Friday but didn't give numbers. An airport official says TSA is sending 10 more people.

The move underscores TSA's challenge in staffing airports during a partial government shutdown. Screeners missed paychecks last week, although they got $500 bonuses and some received pay for working the first day of the shutdown.

The move also comes at the start of a three-day holiday weekend that is expected to mean more travelers at the nation's airports.

TSA says 6.4 percent of screeners missed work Thursday, compared with 3.8 percent on the comparable day last year. TSA indicates many employees say they can't get to work because of financial limitations.

Newark had the fourth-longest maximum wait for screening Thursday, 29 minutes. Atlanta, Minneapolis and Seattle had longer waits.