Report to Congress Shows DISCO Lost Ground in 2010
The “Annual Report to Congress on Personnel Security Investigations for Industry and the National Industrial Security Program” for fiscal year 2010 is one of the more useful periodic reports containing data on security clearance processing. Produced by the Defense Security Service, it is the only report that provides any information about interim clearances and one of the few that provides raw numbers.
Understanding the numbers can be a little tricky. For example, you can’t simply divide the number of interim clearances granted by the number of final clearance to determine the percentage of cases that received interim clearances, because:
- Applicants drop out of the process before a final clearance decision is made on their cases.
- Interim clearances are granted at the beginning of process and final clearances are granted at the end, and these 2 events don’t always happen in the same fiscal year.
- Some of the final clearance decisions were made for periodic reinvestigations where interim clearance decisions are unnecessary.
What the report clearly shows is that the Defense Industrial Security Clearance Office (DISCO) lost ground in FY2010. It started the year with 9,596 cases pending and ended the year with 17,936 cases pending, even though it opened 5,687 fewer cases than it did in the previous year and granted 5,900 Secret clearances using eAdjudication. According to the report, operational productivity declined due to personnel problems related to the scheduled relocation of DISCO from Columbus, Ohio to Fort Meade, Md. by August 2011. Unless DISCO increases their use contract adjudicators or raises their pay scale, expect further problems in the coming months.