Number of border guards could triple with new US legislation
New anti-terrorism legislation up before the US Congress this week will, if approved, triple the number of agents patrolling the U.S.-Canadian border.
The security increase would be the largest in the history of the northern border, one of the most open international frontiers in the world.
The anti-terrorism bill would provide $609 million for the northern border, including $100 million for technology upgrades such as biometrics systems that can scan physical features and could be used to identify high-risk travelers. Another $200 million would be available to improve fingerprinting systems along the border.
The bill would increase the number of Customs agents from 1,773 to 5,319. Border patrol agents would rise from 300 to 900. The cap on overtime for border agents would also be lifted.
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