H.R. 5678 would require the Chief Privacy Officer of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to improve the procedures the department uses to safeguard personally identifiable information managed by DHS. The bill would require that official to develop guidance and policies on those procedures for DHS’s 14 operational and support components and to ensure department employees comply with them. The bill also would codify the disclosure policies of DHS to promote compliance with the Freedom of Information Act.
On the basis of information from DHS, CBO expects that the department would hire 10 new employees, at an average salary of $150,000, to ensure component agencies are complying with federal privacy requirements. For this estimate, CBO assumes that the bill will be enacted in fiscal year 2020. Under that assumption, the agency could incur some costs in 2020, but CBO expects that most of the costs would be incurred in 2021 and later. In total, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 5678 would cost $9 million over the 2020-2025 period (see Table 1). Such spending would be subject to the availability of appropriations.