Immigration and Naturalization Service Reorganization and Related Legislative Proposals [Updated July 24, 2001]   [open pdf - 44KB]

"The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), with a current annual budget of $5.0 billion, is the primary agency charged with enforcing the nation's immigration law. Regulating immigration can be viewed as having two basic components: stemming illegal immigration (enforcement) and facilitating legal immigration (service). The Bush Administration supports separating service from enforcement. While no legislation has been acted upon in the 107th Congress at this date, restructuring proposals may be considered in the future, since restructuring may necessitate amending existing statutory authorities. Previously, the Clinton Administration had initiated steps to restructure INS internally by separating the agency's enforcement and service functions, but sought to maintain the statutory authority for both functions under a single executive who would integrate immigration policy, standards, and operations. While there is no statutory requirement that the Administration gain Congress's formal approval of any agency reorganization, Congress could choose to mandate legislatively that INS be dismantled or reorganized differently. Indeed, on March 22, 2000, the House Judiciary's Immigration and Claims Subcommittee approved legislation to dismantle INS. Without the support of key Members of Congress, the Clinton Administration did not move forcefully to complete its INS restructuring plan. This report will be updated to reflect legislative action."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RS20279
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