Regional
12:33 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

New Budget Looks To Add 2,000 Customs Officers

Included in the massive federal budget bill awaiting President Barack Obama's signature is funding for 2,000 additional customs officers at the country's ports of entry.

Texas officials for years have called for more officers to facilitate trade at the U.S.-Mexico border. While the ranks of Border Patrol agents have swelled in recent years to police the areas between the ports, the number of customs officers who inspect visitors and commercial cargo edged up only slightly.

It remains unclear how the 2,000 new positions would be distributed among the country's 329 ports of entry. There are already more than 21,000 customs officers.

A Government Accountability Office report last summer noted that U.S. Customs and Border Protection had determined it needed 3,811 more officers to accomplish its goals in fiscal 2014.

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