Congressman Leonard Lance (NJ 07) returned Tuesday from a congressional delegation visit to the southwest border region of the United States. The mission, led by U.S. House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mike McCaul (TX 10), included on-site visits to border security infrastructure and discussions with enforcement personnel in San Diego, Tucson and Texas border towns McAllen and Harlingen.
"I gained a much greater understanding of the tremendous challenges to keep our Nation secure. The issues of human smuggling, drug trafficking, and the possible exploitation of a porous border by those who wish our country harm are of great concern to me," said Lance. "This will be a top priority in Congress and I will work to implement a comprehensive strategy that finally achieves border security."
The information gathered on the trip provided Lance and other lawmakers a better idea of the country's assets and how they are being utilized. Lance praised personnel on the ground for their efforts and vowed to give them further capital to improve conditions. Passage of border security legislation is expected to be the first of several immigration-related bills taken up after the August recess.
"I am in full support of Chairman McCaul's legislation, The Border Security Results Act of 2013. I look forward to working with him to accomplish a long-term solution that ensures security and safety in our homeland," added Lance. "I thank Chairman McCaul for his leadership on this issue and I hope to work in a bipartisan fashion for its enactment."
The legislation will prescribe a list of metrics that Department of Homeland Security officials would have to report to Congress. The information would then be used to determine the resources and personnel needed to complete full border security. The comprehensive strategy will be all-encompassing possibly including more manpower, fencing, fixed towers, mobile units, new technologies and assets from the military.