Better Borders Group Urges Senate to Take Up Border Security Bill

Wednesday, March 20, 2002

Washington, D.C. — The Americans for Better Borders coalition today urged the Senate leadership to take up the border-security bill, passed twice by the House, and allow the full Senate to consider the measure before Congress adjourns for recess.

“The Senate leadership should move quickly on this bill for the sake of national security,” said Randel Johnson, U.S. Chamber of Commerce vice president and chair of the ABB coalition. “This bill goes a long way toward giving federal agencies the tools they need to protect us from terrorists while continuing to allow the free flow of legitimate trade and travel.”

The Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act would increase funding for the border agencies to add personnel and improve technology, mandate improvements to internal Immigration and Naturalization Service systems, and require better information sharing among law-enforcement, intelligence and border-security agencies.

“We realize that this bill poses significant challenges to the agencies and Congress to implement new technologies and processes under tight deadlines,” said Johnson. “Congress must allocate adequate, ongoing resources to ensure that these deadlines are met and new systems are properly maintained and updated into the future.

“More than six months have passed since the September 11 attacks,” said Johnson. “The Senate must quickly pass this legislation to help ensure our nation’s immigration policies are in line with our number-one goal of deterring terrorism.”

The ABB on March 8 sent a letter to senators urging them to move quickly on the House-passed border-security bill.

The Americans for Better Borders (ABB) coalition is a broad-based group of regional business organizations, companies and national trade associations, representing manufacturing, hospitality, tourism, transportation, recreation and other industry sectors, working to ensure the efficient flow of goods and people across the nation’s borders while addressing national security concerns.

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