Letter to Senator Tom Daschle
The Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2001(HR 3525/S 1749)

February 27, 2002

The Honorable Tom Daschle
Majority Leader
United States Senate
825 Senate Hart Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senator Daschle:

On behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce I would like to urge you to bring to the floor as soon as possible the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2001(H.R. 3525/S. 1749). As you know, the Chamber and its members have been long concerned about the security and efficiency of our borders for commerce and travel. We believe this legislation goes a long way toward achieving those goals and is particularly necessary following the tragic events of September 11. The legislation has broad bipartisan support, and has already passed the U.S. House of Representatives by voice vote on December 19, 2001.

This legislation takes a careful and reasoned approach to the issue of border security, and we strongly support the provisions to increase resources for technology and personnel for our Immigration and Customs Services, enhanced data sharing capabilities, expansion of pre-clearance and pre-inspection programs, working with our NAFTA partners to ensure our joint security while enhancing the flow of legitimate commerce and travel across our shared borders. These changes are long overdue.

While we understand that Congress must provide adequate funding if the ambitious deadlines set forth in the legislation are to be met, further delay in this legislation will only further postpone the needed reforms that can provide both security and stability to our inspections processes, and allow business to look to the future of cross-border travel and trade with some sense of stability.

We look forward to working with you to secure passage of this legislation, and working with Congress and the Administration in its implementation.

Sincerely,

R. Bruce Josten
Executive Vice President, Government Affairs
U.S. Chamber of Commerce