Skip to main content Skip to footer site map
This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Transportation Security Inspector - Explosive Detection Canine Handler SV-1801-G
Department:  Department Of Homeland Security
Agency:  Transportation Security Administration
Job Announcement Number:  EWR-13-618545

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$50,662.00 to $78,496.00 / Per Year
Wednesday, June 19, 2013 to Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Full Time - Permanent
3 vacancies in the following location:
Newark, NJ, USView Map

Open to all U.S. Citizens.

Salary range listed includes Locality Pay of 28.72%.

This position is located at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) in Newark, NJ.


Do you desire to protect American interests and secure our Nation while building a meaningful and rewarding career? If so, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is calling. DHS components work collectively to prevent terrorism, secure borders, enforce and administer immigration laws, safeguard cyberspace and ensure resilience to disasters. The vitality and magnitude of this mission is achieved by a diverse workforce spanning hundreds of occupations. Make an impact; join DHS.

Securing Travel, Protecting People - At the Transportation Security Administration, you will serve in a high-stakes environment to safeguard the American way of life. In cities across the country, you would secure airports, seaports, railroads, highways, and/or public transit systems, thus protecting America's transportation infrastructure and ensuring freedom of movement for people and commerce. For additional information about our agency please: Click Here


  • You must possess U.S. Citizenship or be a U.S. National.
  • You must complete a favorable Background Investigation (BI).
  • You must pass Drug and Alcohol Screening, subject to random drug tests.
  • You must successfully complete a training course (maybe up to five weeks).
  • You must hold a valid driver's license.
  • See additional "Conditions of Employment" in "Other Information" section


Back to top

As a Transportation Security Inspector (TSI) with TSA, you will be responsible for ensuring security compliance of persons and transportation systems/entities regulated under the Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 1500 series. You will perform selected assignments and progressively responsible inspection work such as:

  • Conducting regulatory inspections/investigations and supports criminal investigations related to alleged or suspected security violations.
  • Identifying, collecting, and preserving evidence used to support enforcement actions. Assisting in determining when enforcement action should be initiated, preparing enforcement investigation reports, and recommending to TSA counsel the type of action and level of penalty commensurate with the nature and severity of the violation.
  • Providing testimony and participating in enforcement proceedings. Entering data pertinent to investigations, inspections, and incidents into the national database Performance and Results Information System (PARIS).
  • Responding to threats, violations or potential violations and security incidents as defined by the National Incident Management Systems or as directed by the Federal Security Director (FSD) or appropriate authority.
  • Providing overt and covert presence, including at high visibility activities, to detect and reduce identified security threats/vulnerabilities.
  • Reviewing and analyzing assessment reports and testing results with specific attention to identifying unusual trends and actions that appear to have the potential for developing a security/safety problem.
  • Assisting in formulating recommended or alternative courses of action to pursue by regulated parties in order to satisfy security requirements.
  • Participating in activities designed to identify security threats through appropriately deployed technology or techniques as directed by Headquarters (HQ), FSD or Assistant Federal Security Director (AFSD).
If selected for a Transportation Security Inspector - Explosives Detection Canine Handler position, in addition to the duties assigned to all TSIs outlined above, you will also be responsible for the daily care of the canine, including necessary health maintenance care, feeding/watering, and grooming of the assigned canine and maintaining safe and sanitary conditions in the kennels and home environment. The handler is responsible for conducting proficiency training as mandated by TSA in order to pass and maintain annual certification standards. The handler/canine are responsible for screening cargo and searching wide and narrow body aircraft, terminals, luggage, facilities, vehicles and other venues for the presence of explosives, as directed. Maintain necessary training and utilization records as identified by TSA and operates a government vehicle equipped with a kennel to transport the canine to various work sites and home. Conducts random patrols and routine sweeps at various areas within the transportation environment to provide a visual deterrent for criminal or terrorist activity. Respond to threats that affect transportation operations or public safety as necessary. Note: The duties of this position are performed under close guidance and supervision using basic technical inspection knowledge acquired in formal core training and OJT. Assignments typically include inspection work in which established policies and procedures cover virtually all of the work, with little or no room for discretion.


Back to top

To qualify for the SV-G Pay Band, you must meet one of the qualification requirements (A, B, OR C) as outlined below.

A. Experience: For those qualifying using experience, your application must clearly outline three (3) years of progressively responsible general experience, one (1) year of which was equivalent to at least the SV-F or GS-4 grade level in the Federal service or equivalent in the private sector. Such experience will demonstrate the ability to: analyze problems, gather pertinent data, and recognize solutions; plan and organize work; and communicate effectively orally and in writing.


B. Education: Bachelor's or higher-level degree in any field from an accredited college or university.


C. Combination of education and experience: Combinations of successfully completed post-high school education and experience may be used to meet total qualification requirements, and may be computed by first determining the total qualifying experience as a percentage of the experience required for the position; then determining the education as a percentage of the education required for the position; and then adding the two percentages. The total percentages must equal at least 100 percent to qualify for the position.

If you are attempting to qualify based on education, in whole or in part, you MUST submit a copy of your transcript(s) from an accredited college or university (for each school attended) to establish qualifications based upon education. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable at the time of application. Official transcripts may be required at a later date.

Note: Credit for experience is given based on a 40-hour workweek. Part-time experience is credited on a part-time ratio, i.e., working 20 hours per week for two months equals one month of experience. No additional credit is given for overtime.

You must meet the qualification requirements of this position no later than the closing date of the vacancy announcement.


You will be evaluated based on a comparison of the position requirements against the quality and extent of the experience and/or related education as reflected in your resume and supporting documentation. You are encouraged to ensure work experiences clearly show possession of the competencies required for this position. We will compare your resume and supporting documentation to your responses on the assessment questionnaire. If, after reviewing your resume and any supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your application materials, your category placement may be adjusted and/or you may be excluded from consideration for this job.

When completing the assessment questionnaire for this position, you will be prompted to elect if you wish for your application to be considered as External (where Veterans' Preference applies), as Status (current or former Federal Employees), and/or Internal to TSA as a current permanent or competitive temporary employee. At that time, please select the answer(s) that apply to you and your application to this position.

A successful TSI candidate will be required to complete a two (2) step application and assessment process. However, some TSI candidates may be exempted from the second step in the application process (see the “How to Apply” section for exemption details). A separate prompt, within the online application questionnaire, will allow you to claim exemption eligibility according to the criterion within the “How to Apply” section of this announcement.

To preview questions please click here.


Back to top
DHS offers competitive salaries and an attractive benefits package, including: health, dental, vision, life, and long-term care insurance; retirement plan; Thrift Savings Plan [similar to a 401(k)]; Flexible Spending Account; Employee Assistance Program; personal leave days; and paid federal holidays. Other benefits may include: flexible work schedules; telework; tuition reimbursement; transportation subsidies; uniform allowance; health and wellness programs; and fitness centers. DHS is committed to employee development and offers a variety of employee training and developmental opportunities. For more information, go to and select "benefits."


Conditions of Employment: TSA canine handlers are generally granted the use of a Government vehicle, typically referred to as Home-to-Work authority, for the efficient care and transportation of canines. The Department of Homeland Security prohibits authorization of Home-To Work Transportation to employees who live more than 50 miles from their duty station of record. Therefore, as a Condition of Employment, all persons hired to canine handler positions must reside within a 50-mile radius of the official duty station for the position.  This Condition of Employment must be met by the time of appointment.

  • Occasional overnight travel may be required.
  • Must pass a Background Investigation (BI) and maintain eligibility for a clearance at the Secret level.
  • Must successfully complete the Basic Security Inspections Course described below.
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a government travel card.
  • Must successfully complete the NEDCTP Canine Handler Course described below.

Basic Security Inspections Training Course: The selectee will be required to attend an up to 5-week course in Oklahoma City, OK. The Basic Security Inspections Course provides students with the fundamental knowledge and skills necessary to conduct security inspections and assessments, including using legal and regulatory documents that govern transportation security.

Additional Training/Instruction Course: The selectee will be required to attend a 10-12 week canine handler course which is held at the Canine Training and Explosives Branch, Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, TX

Physical Demands: Must maintain physical agility to meet work requirements of regular and recurring physical exertion such as prolonged standing, bending, and stooping. Work will require driving or traveling by motor vehicle. The work involves regular and recurring exposure to moderate risk or discomforts that require special safety precautions.

Eligibility to apply for other Federal positions: TSA is an Excepted Service agency exempt from most of Title 5 United States Code, including regulations which apply to displaced Federal employees (CTAP/ICTAP) of other agencies, and employment with TSA does not confer "Competitive Status" that generally results from selection and service in Competitive Service agencies. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has established an Interchange Agreement, which allows most permanent TSA employees to apply and be considered for vacancies in Competitive Service agencies. Information from OPM on this or other Interchange Agreements is available at:

To ensure the accomplishment of our mission, DHS requires every employee to be reliable and trustworthy. To meet those standards, all selected applicants must undergo and successfully pass a background investigation as a condition of placement into this position.

TSA employees who are absent for the purpose of performing military duty may apply for any vacancies announced in their absence. 

Payment of relocation expenses (Permanent Change of Station) is not authorized.

Qualified non-competitive eligible candidates may be referred for consideration on a separate unranked list.

More than one position may be filled from this announcement.

If selected for this position, you will be eligible to receive hazardous duty pay based on the nature of this position and the condition of employment which requires you to be able and willing to work with various hazardous chemicals including explosives.

This position is within the Technical category of TSA's Core Compensation Plan.


Back to top

Please Note: All of the following must be received in our office by 11:59 PM EST (Eastern Standard Time) on the closing date of this announcement. This includes both online and mailed application materials. If we do not receive all required information by the closing date, your application may not be considered.

Your application must include:

1. Resume

2. Self Assessment Questionnaire for this position

3. Applicable supporting documents (see Required Documents Section)

Click the "Apply Online" button and follow the prompts to apply. If you are unable to apply online, please call the Help Desk for a printed Employment Packet which will be sent to you for completion and return to this office. The highest scoring candidates will then be invited and required to take a writing skills assessment. The invitation to take the writing assessment must be accepted and the test completed by the deadline outlined in the invitation in order to be considered (fourteen calendar days after the day your invitation was sent- please monitor your email for you invitation). Candidates that apply will be invited to complete the writing assessment soon after the closing date of this announcement. The score obtained on the writing skills assessment will account for 50% of the overall score used to determine those who are best qualified for consideration. Additional information on the writing skills assessment is contained in the candidate preparation guide. The preparation guide can be obtained by clicking on the following link:

Please Note: Candidates eligible for the writing skills assessment will be required to travel at their own expense to the test location. The results for candidates who take the writing skills assessment are good for one year from the date the test was taken. Please see the "What to Expect Next" section of this announcement for information regarding this process. For additional information about the TSA and employment, please visit:"target=newwin>

WSA Exemption Note: Candidates that currently hold, or have previously held, a Transportation Security Inspector position (at TSA, at any band level) will be exempted from the writing skills assessment. If you are eligible for the exemption, and wish to claim exemption, you must claim your exemption when prompted within the online application questionnaire. Please note that upon claiming exemption status, the employment records of current TSA employees will be reviewed to confirm eligibility for exemption. Those that are not current TSA employees must submit exemption documentation (as defined in the “Required Documents” section of this announcement). Candidates exempted from the WSA will be evaluated based upon the first phase of the hiring process only.


In addition to a resume and the assessment questions, you must submit copies of any of the following documents if you are applying based on current or former Federal Government Status (if you are not a current TSA employee), Veterans' Preference, or education or a combination of education and experience:

SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action - Current TSA employees are not required to submit an SF-50 to support eligibility for internal/status consideration or assessment exemption consideration.

If you are not a current TSA employee: you must submit your most recent personnel action SF-50 (or equivalent document) to support your eligibility for Status consideration.  If you elect Status for the consideration of your application without submitting an SF-50 demonstrating your current or previous permanent Federal employment status, and you are not a current TSA employee, your application may not receive Status consideration.

Assessment Exemption Documentation – If you are not a current TSA employee, but claim exemption from the assessment, you must submit a personnel action SF-50(s) to document that you have held a Transportation Security Inspector position at TSA. If you claim exemption and do not submit this supporting documentation, you may not receive assessment exemption consideration.

DD-214 - If you are claiming Veterans' Preference, provide a copy of your DD-214 (Member Copy 4) Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, or other appropriate documentation to prove your entitlement and to provide verification of an Honorable Discharge. Failure to provide this documentation will result in your application not receiving 5-point preference.

SF-15 and VA Letter - If you are claiming Veterans' Preference based upon a Compensable Disability, Widow or Spouse Entitlement, or as a Purple Heart recipient, you must submit your DD-214 or other proof of entitlement; an SF-15, and the required proof of disability, i.e., Department of Veterans Affairs letter dated 1991 or later. Failure to provide this documentation will result in your application not receiving 10-point preference.

Transcripts - If you wish to qualify for this position based on your education, submit copies of your transcript(s) from accredited colleges or universities for each school attended.


HR Help Desk
Phone: 877-872-7990
Fax: 571-258-4052
TDD: 877-872-7992
Agency Information:
DHS/Transportation Security Administration
Shared Service Center
2650 Park Tower Drive
Suite 201
Merrifield, VA
Fax: 571-258-4052


The questionnaire and Writing Skills Assessment will assess your qualifications for the job, and will be used to identify the best qualified applicants to be referred to the hiring manager for further consideration and possible interview. We will notify you of the outcome of these steps when they have been completed. You may also check your application status by visiting the Candidate Dashboard.

Back to top
EEO Policy Statement | Reasonable Accommodation Policy Statement | Veterans Information | Legal and Regulatory Guidance