We thank the Administration for proposing an additional $374 million in funding for FY 2017 that will allow the Border Patrol to increase its manpower. The U.S. Border Patrol is already more than 1,700 Agents below the congressionally mandated floor of 21,370 agents and the lack of manpower is already negatively impacting Border Patrol operations. Adding an additional 5,000 agents will be a logistical challenge, but will have a tremendous impact on border security.
Securing the border will be a difficult task and we are thankful to have the support of the White House. We have previously met with the Administration to discuss the many needs of Border Patrol agents resulting from the eight years of under-investment from the Obama Administration.
Although we welcome these additional resources, we fully understand that resources for border security are not unlimited. Tough choices will have to be made as to which investments will have the greatest impact on border security and this includes funding for “the wall”.
We will be making a formal request to meet with the President and his team to discuss the areas where we have concerns. We want to thank President Trump for his focus on border security and look forward to working with the Administration in achieving our mutual goal of protecting the American people.