Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Make The Beneficiaries Of Immigration Law Pay The Costs

There are two border security items in the news recently.  In one, as usual, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is closing the barn door after the horses have left.  Suddenly CBP is verifying the status of students as they enter the United States.

KVUE.com May 12, 2013 by Angela Kocherga
New Procedure For Student Visas Causes Delays At Border
EL PASO, Texas -- A new security policy requiring Customs and Border Protection officers to verify all student visas is creating delays for students who commute daily from Mexico to universities in the United States.
“We’re hearing delays anywhere from 30 minutes to three to four hours,” said Gary Edens, vice president for Student Affairs at the University of Texas at El Paso.
The delays are in addition to the amount of time students wait in line with everyone else waiting to reach a Customs and Border Protection officer and present their documents...
On Friday, CBP officers started requiring students to go through a second screening process.
“You go to secondary. Park at a different place and get out of your car,” said Elizabeth Rodriguez, one of the international students.
Now she has to go inside where officers punch her information into a separate system used to verify student visas.
“The amount of international students that cross the border just overwhelms the amount of manpower they have to do that for every single one of us that’s coming every day, all day,” said Rodriguez.

All, of course, thanks to another office of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), that approved the asylum applications of the elder Tsarnaev brother and father, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

The student visa verification procedure is in response to the Boston marathon bombing.

The related issue is as described by the not so comely UTEL co-ed, is related to the major problem at the border, under-funding of infrastructure and staffing.  The reason, of course, is that land border crossers do it for free.  Unlike persons arriving by plane or vessel, land border crossers do not pay a fee to be inspected by CBP.  Of course, CBP has slowly transitioned from funding by these user-fees to appropriation funding.  This is irrational, as border crossing fees should fund the function that CBP executes, inspecting arriving persons and cargo.  The fees now go directly to the general fund in most cases.  This is, in fact, a subsidy of illegal immigration, as 40% of illegal aliens enter the United States and subsequently violate the terms of admission and remain in the United States after the date of expiration of their period of admission.

Breitbart.com April 8, 2013 by William Bigelow
40% Of Illegal Immigrants Overstayed Visas
Roughly 40%  of the 11 million undocumented workers in the United States are foreigners who came legally mostly through visas but have overstayed the length of the visas or overstayed their legal residence here, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. These immigrants did not cross the U.S. border with stealth but rather obeyed the laws when they arrived. The scant hard evidence about this group indicates that they are better educated than non-visa illegal immigrants, and often speak English with greater fluency. They also tend to emigrate from Europe, Asia and Africa,  rather than Central and South America. In many cases, they used tourist visas to enter the U.S.

What this tells us is that CBP is falling down on the job.  And there is a direct corollary to the staffing issue at Ports-of-Entry.  CBP management emphasizes clearing flights in one hour, with local managers gaining bonuses for quick, rather than through, inspection of arriving passengers.  At the land borders, managers are judged not on drug seizures or illegal aliens intercepted but by border wait times.

The solution to the infrastructure and staffing problem, as well as the counterproductive emphasis on inspection speed is to expand CBP staffing to adequately address the problem of aliens who overstay by increasing the thoroughness of inspections.

To get there though, the problem at the land borders must be addressed.  And the way to address that is to build up staffing and infrastructure and to have the persons who use that service, especially the aliens who benefit from inspection, to pay the full cost of that inspection.

CBP has decided to transition to a fee structure, but the usual suspects oppose a fee because they see that CBP might actually start addressing the problem of the initial entry of visa overstayers.

Homeland Security News Wire May 28, 2013
Border Entry Fee Opposed By Border-State Lawmakers, Businesses
DHS, in its 2014 budget proposal, asked for permission to conduct a study about imposing fees at U.S. land border crossings. The proposal is bitterly opposed by both businesses on the northern border, which make most of their money from Canadians who cross into the United States just to shop, and lawmakers from states along the U.S.-Canada border, who say such fees will hurt both commerce and relations between the United States and Canada.
DHS, in its 2014 budget proposal, asked for permission to conduct a study about imposing fees at U.S. land border crossings. The proposal is bitterly opposed by both businesses on the northern border, which make most of their money from Canadians who cross into the United States just to shop, and lawmakers from states along the U.S.-Canada border, who say such fees will hurt both commerce and relations between the United States and Canada.
The Houston Chronicle reports that the DHS study calls for launching a pilot program to determine fee collection methods — short of actually collecting money at the border. The fee would offset the costs of border screenings and border security infrastructure. The Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency has not said how much the study will cost.

The Slave Power is obviously opposed, but the intrepid reporter only interviewed merchants who were concerned about cross border shoppers, not the Slave Power who employ border crossers in the service industry primarily on the border with Mexico.

“It’s a deterrent,” Michael Hill, who owns a gas station is fully stocked with wine, beer and milk, all of which are cheaper in the U.S. told the  Chronicle. “They should be doing anything they can to get them down here to buy more.”
“The imposition of such a toll would act as a barrier to the greater economic integration that we seek, and is the absolute last thing we should be doing to grow our economy,” eighteen Republican and Democratic House members said in  a letter t to DHS secretary Janet Napolitano earlier this month.
Currently, those who enter the United States by air or sea travel pay $2.00 – the fee is included in the price of the ticket — , but those who  enter the country by land do so for free.

And those who seek to elect a new people are also concerned, and acted swiftly and aggressively.  Patrick Leahy, as is his wont, lead proponent of amnesty, was most concerned and filed an amendment that was added to Marco RINO's amnesty bill that would prohibit such fees or studies about the efficacy of fees.  

Even a miserly $2.00 fee per person at the land border would greatly aid in the proper funding of the inspection of persons seeking admission to the United States at our land borders.  It is certainly cheaper than admitting to the United States those millions of illegal aliens who present themselves for inspection.  A mere additional $2.00 for inspecting departing persons as well would help solve the overstay problem.  And, more importantly, place the cost of the enforcement of immigration laws upon those who benefit from the lax current standard and who are the users of the services.  It is no more a deterrent to lawful border crossers than an entrance fee to a national park is to tourists.

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