U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell joined several Republican colleagues on Wednesday in introducing the "Border Security First Act of 2007" as an amendment to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations bill.
In response to the continued effort to secure America's borders, the Act provides $3 billion in emergency funding for the following:
· Operational control over 100% of the U.S.-Mexico land border
· 23,000 Border Patrol agents hired, trained, and reporting for duty
· 4 Unmanned Aerial Vehicles & 105 ground-based radar and camera towers
· 300 miles of vehicle barriers & 700 miles of border fencing
· A permanent end to the "catch-and-release" policy with 45,000 detention beds.
The legislation also contains additional border and interior enforcement provisions necessary for stemming the tide of illegal immigration, restricting immigration benefits to lawbreakers, expediting the removal of illegal immigrants, improving employment verification systems, and further protecting the homeland from terrorists and criminals.
"I heard from many Kentuckians during the Senate debate on immigration, and they expressed their concerns on border security," said McConnell. "My constituents want the government to take action now to secure our borders and enforce all existing laws, and I agree with them. This legislation takes the necessary steps towards enforcing current law, making border security a top priority, and helping ensure our homeland is protected, and I urge my colleagues to support it."
The FY'08 Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Bill is currently being considered by the Senate.