NEW YORK CITY-Security operations throughout the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s facilities, including the region’s major airports as well as the World Trade Center complex, will be centralized via a new department that’s set to be created by the end of September, the Port announced late Thursday afternoon. The authority’s board voted Thursday to implement a nationwide search for its first-ever chief security officer, who will report to Patrick Foye, the Port’s executive director.

During the search for a CSO, Foye and deputy executive director Bill Baroni will oversee a transition team that will help assemble the new security division. The Chertoff Group, co-founded by Michael Chertoff, former US Secretary of Homeland Security, will assist in the transition planning, according to minutes of the board’s Thursday meeting. The Port had retained the Chertoff Group in May 2011 to study the bistate agency’s management of security operations, and extended the contract this past December.

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