Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) welcomed legislation introduced by U.S. Senators Gary Peters (D-MI), Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and John Cornyn (R-TX), that would increase the authorized number of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers by 600 annually to help the agency meet its current and future staffing needs.
In ACI-NA’s letter of support, ACI-NA President and CEO Kevin M. Burke said:
“With CBP’s workforce staffing model still showing a deficit of over 2000 CBP officers, airports greatly appreciate your efforts to ensure that CBP has sufficient staffing to address lengthy wait times and new air service opportunities in communities across the country. Insufficient CBP staffing routinely results in long passenger wait times and missed flight connections, thereby discouraging international travelers, who spend an average of $4,200 per visit, from traveling to the United States. These staffing problems will only worsen as CBP tries to fulfill the biometric entry-exit requirements imposed by Congress. On top of that, chronic staffing shortfalls threaten existing and new air service for many local communities, even though air passengers pay for the service through a number of federal user fees. Unfortunately, in just the past few years CBP has denied landing rights to new international service at many airports due to inadequate staffing levels.”
Read ACI-NA’s full letter of support here.