Tuesday, August 3, 2010

House Passes $701 Million in Funding for Southern Border Security

(File Photo)
Washington, DC – On July 29, U.S. Congressmen Henry Cuellar (TX-28), Solomon P. Ortiz (TX-27), Ruben Hinojosa (TX-15), Ciro D. Rodriguez (TX-23), and Silvestre Reyes (TX-16) released the following statement after the House passed late Wednesday $701 million in emergency federal funding to further secure the nation’s southern border.

“At a time when our neighbor to the south, Mexico, is experiencing high incidents of border violence along the more than 1,200 miles of Texas-Mexico border, we approved a measure that would provide much-needed funding for border security and will augment our current security efforts by adding more Border Patrol and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents, as well as deliver other support for local law enforcement. We will remain engaged in this debate with our colleagues in Congress and the White House to ensure we allocate the much-needed funding.”

The $701 million in emergency border security funding now pending approval in the Senate includes:

  • $208.4 million for 1,200 additional Border Patrol agents deployed between the ports of entry along the Southwest Border
  • $136 million to maintain current Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer staffing levels and add 500 additional officers at ports of entry along the Southwest Border
  • $35.5 million for improved tactical communications on the Southwest Border, three permanent Border Patrol forward operating bases, and a surge of workforce integrity investigations designed to prevent corruption among CBP officers and agents
  • $50 million for Operation Stonegarden grants to support local law enforcement activities on the border
  • $32 million to procure two additional CBP unmanned aircraft systems
  • $30 million for Immigration and Customs Enforcement activities directed at reducing the threat of narcotics smuggling and associated violence
  • $201 million for Justice Department programs
Earlier this week, Congressman Cuellar (TX-28), Chairman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border, Maritime and Global Counterterrorism, joined six other southern border lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives to urge House Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer to introduce a stand-alone bill with at least $701 million in emergency federal funding for the nation’s southern border.

In a letter addressed to Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer, the Border Caucus members urged their colleagues to bring an emergency bill to the floor following the Senate’s rejection of critical border funds late last week as part of the Fiscal Year 2010 Supplemental Funding Bill.

Now, the emergency funding measure passed by the House awaits approval in the Senate before it can be signed into law by the President.

To see a summary of the border security funding bill, please visit:

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