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The U.S. House of Representatives has passed a bill that would increase security at the nation's transportation facilities.The Securing Public Areas of Transportation Facilities Act of 2018 would give the U.S. Department of Homeland Security the "critical tools it needs in order to develop public-private partnerships that strengthen protections of soft targets, such as public areas of airports and rail terminals," said U.S. Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-N.J.), the bill's sponsor, in a press release."Collaboration with the private sector is critical to securing soft targets and other vulnerable heavily trafficked spaces," he said. "My bill authorizes the Department of Homeland Security to work with private-sector stakeholders on the development of communications, incident response, strategic planning and other security approaches to protecting public areas."Payne is ranking member of the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response & Communications of the House Committee on Homeland Security.