The National Maritime Law Enforcement Academy is a non-profit organization headquartered in Washington D.C. Through its extensive network of highly experienced professionals with superior credentials in security, intelligence, law enforcement and maritime operations, NMLEA has been a leader in providing education and training for law enforcement personnel and others in the critical infrastructure industries located on or near the maritime environment. In addition to advanced/improved tactical operations, NMLEA also provides training and education in critical incident response to catastrophic events invoking the National Incident Management System (NIMS).
In the wake of 9/11, seaport security received long-neglected, critical consideration. The United States has 361 seaports and more than 3200 waterside facilities handling 99% of U.S. overseas trade by volume (61% by value), accounting for approximately 25% of U.S. GDP. The U.S. Congress began by enacting the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002. Subsequent legislation, as well as regulatory and administrative rule-making, provide the framework for required seaport security training in the U.S. Internationally, the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization adopted the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code, providing substantially similar training requirements for the 160 nations presently signatory to the ISPS.
In October 2005, the Department of Homeland Security awarded a grant to The Florida State University (FSU) Learning Systems Institute to design an online and instructor-led port security training program that would effectively enable federal, state and local law enforcement, and port facilities to comply with the statutory and regulatory requirments.
The PortStar Project
The NMLEA is partnering with Educational Development Group (EDG) to launch the PortStar System. (www.nmlea.org - PortStar) The unique features of the comprehensive PortStar System, combining the creative use of technology, flexible delivery methods and expert support, coupled with pricing strategies designed to ensure substantial savings for subscribers - who must provide minimum training certification - will ensure immediate, favorable market penetration.
In addition, pursuant to the Safe Port Act of 2006, DHS is required to allocate monies to port authorities, facility operators and state and local government agencies to enhance port security. DHS places a high priority on training and restricts those grant monies to MARAD/ Coast Guard approved curricula and instructors, minimum requirements that the PortStar System meets and exceeds.
There is no more noble cause than to strive to better prepare those who serve and protect our citizens and way of life here in the United States and those who share our ideals and hopes of freedom and peace. NMLEA is committed to enhancing education and training, and increasing the level of security at maritime facilities here and abroad. This program will become a truly necessary element of our national security strategy - a program that has been certified, tested and proven effective. The NMLEA celebrated its tenth anniversary this (2010) year.