WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Trent Franks (Arizona District 8) today introduced the National Border and Homeland Security Act in response to the growing crisis on our southern border.
According to Franks, “Border security and national security are inextricably linked. A porous border is an open invitation to those who wish to harm America, and for too long our borders have been an inviting access point for drug smugglers, human traffickers, and potential terrorists. The situation has only become more dire in light of the influx of tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors illegally crossing our southern border en masse.
“Much like in a surgical procedure, the first step undeniably must be to stop the bleeding. The National Border and Homeland Security Act aims to do precisely that.”
The National Border and Homeland Security Act would direct the Department of Homeland Security to finish the construction of fencing, and to provide for the installation of additional physical barriers, roads, lighting, cameras, and sensors to gain operational control of the southwest border. Operational control of the border will no longer be defined solely by DHS, but will require consultation with border governors, mayors, and sheriffs.
The bill also creates 6,000 new full-time positions for border patrol agents, as well as giving Border Patrol critical access to the 40 percent of land between California and El Paso controlled by the federal government – much of it in the form of national parks and wildlife refuges where border patrol agents are often denied access.
The bill also better equips our border patrol agents to protect our national security by providing the advanced equipment necessary to scan for nuclear materials.