Border Security: DHS's Progress and Challenges in Securing U.S. Borders, Statement for the Record by Rebecca Gambler, Director, Homeland Security and Justice, Statement for the Record to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, U.S. Senate   [open pdf - 258KB]

"At the end of fiscal year 2004, DHS had about 28,100 personnel assigned to patrol U.S. land borders and inspect travelers at air, land, and sea POEs [Points of Entry], at a cost of about $5.9 billion. At the end of fiscal year 2011, DHS had about 41,400 personnel assigned to air, land, and sea POEs and along the border, at a cost of about $11.8 billion. DHS has reported that this stronger enforcement presence was one of several reasons why fewer people were attempting to illegally cross the border. However, challenges remain in securing the border. In recent years, GAO [Government Accountability Office] has reported on a variety of DHS border security programs and operations. As requested, this statement addresses some of the key issues and recommendations GAO has made in the following areas: (1) DHS's efforts to secure the border at and between POEs; (2) DHS interagency coordination and oversight of border security information sharing and enforcement efforts; and (3) DHS management of infrastructure, technology, and other assets used to secure the border. This statement is based on prior products GAO issued from January 2008 through February 2013, along with selected updates conducted in February 2013. For the selected updates, GAO reviewed information from DHS on actions it has taken to address prior GAO recommendations. […] While this statement contains no new recommendations, GAO has previously made recommendations to DHS to enhance border security. DHS has generally concurred with these recommendations and has taken actions, or has actions planned or under way, to address them."

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