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Higgins Announces Additional Customs and Border Patrol Officers to be Assigned to Western New York

Mar 31, 2014
Press Release

Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced that the northern border between Western New York and Southern Ontario will soon see U.S. Homeland Security staffing increases.  U.S. Customs & Border Patrol (CBP) responsible for securing the ports of entry have announced plans to significantly increase personnel at the Port of Buffalo, which includes border crossings in the City of Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Lewiston. 

“Additional border staffing combined with plaza reconstruction to open up the bottleneck as vehicles approach the booths and full implementation of the pre-inspection pilot project that pre-screens trucks on the Canadian side of the border will provide a coordinated approach to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion at our borders,” said Congressman Higgins. 

According to CBP, “Overall, 44 Ports in 18 states will receive additional staffing that will reduce wait times, and help speed the lawful flow of goods and people into the nation.” 

In a statement issued by U.S. Customs & Border Patrol announcing 2,000 new officers nationwide, CBP Commissioner Gil Kerlikowske said, “Research has shown that for every 33 additional CBP officers the U.S. can potentially gain over a 1,000 jobs. These measures are a significant down payment and a wise investment in our airports, seaports and land border crossings that will pay dividends for the nation’s economy.  We look forward to continuing to work with Congress and our stakeholders to implement additional investments that will allow us to support growing volumes of trade and travel that are vital to our economic prosperity.”

Last December, Reps. Higgins and Collins wrote to the previous acting Commissioner calling for additional staffing in Western New York. 

Congressman Higgins is a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security and its subcommittees on Counter Terrorism & Intelligence and Emergency Preparedness, Response & Communications.  He also serves as a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Congressional Northern Border Caucus.