Southwest Border Security Bill becomes law

By September 14, 2010News & Press

Subsequent to passing both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, President Barack Obama signed H.R. 6080, what Obama referred to as a “strategic and integrated southwest border security strategy,” into law on Aug. 13, 2010.

Although its ultimate passage was delayed by procedural delays, a massive immigration enforcement supplemental appropriations package for additional border enforcement – in the form of approximately $600 million through the fiscal year 2011 – is officially law as of the president’s signing on Aug. 13, 2010. The passage of H.R. 6080 has been perceived as an enforcement-first step. “Hopefully colleagues on both sides of the aisle will now come together and we can pass comprehensive reform,” said U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY).

What the future holds is unknown, but the Southwest Border Security Bill will provide additional funding for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) personnel totaling $254 million, including $39 million for CBP to maintain current officer staffing levels on the southwest border, $29 million for CBP to deploy officers at ports of entry on the southwest border, $176 million for 1,000 new Border Patrol agents to form a “strike force” to be deployed at areas most needed and $10 million to support integrity and background investigation programs.

It will also provide an additional $14 million for designing, building and deploying tactical communications for support of enforcement activities on the southwest border including border security fencing, infrastructure, and technology; $32 million to acquire and deploy unmanned aircraft systems (drones) to facilitate air and marine interdiction, operations, maintenance, and procurement; $6 million to construct two forward operating bases for use by CBP to carry out enforcement activities, additional funding for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) personnel totaling $80 million; an additional $196 million for consequent increased expenses related to southwest border enforcement for the U.S. Department of Justice and $10 million for Courts of Appeals and District Courts salaries and expenses to meet increased workload requirements resulting from immigration and other law enforcement activities.

Everything mentioned in the new edict will be considered emergency requirements necessary to meet emergency needs. Last but not least, the implementation of H.R. 6080 will raise filing and fraud prevention and detection fees for L visas by $2,250 and H-1B visas by $2,000 for applicants who have more than 50 employees in the U.S. if more than 50 percent of their employees are on L or H-1B visas.

A. Banerjee is a Houston immigration lawyer in Texas. Before selecting an immigration lawyer in Houston Texas, contact the Law Offices of Annie Banerjee by visiting their information filled web site at