Sinema-Backed Bipartisan Bill Strengthens Border Security, Combats Human & Drug Smuggling

Aug 23, 2023

Senator’s CHECKPOINT Updates Act requires regularly updated CBP guidance, enhances checkpoint technologies, and improves drug seizures training

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema – Chair of the Border Management Subcommittee – co-led the introduction of the bipartisan Continuing High-quality Evaluations of Concerning and Known Persons of Interest through National Training (CHECKPOINT) Updates Act to strengthen border security and combat illegal human and drug smuggling across the Southwest border.

The Senator’s bipartisan legislation requires U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to assess and update guidance related to combating drug and human smuggling at least once every three years – keeping instructions current and accurate to effectively crack down on the dangerous and illegal activity. Additionally, the CHECKPOINT Updates Act enhances technology at Border Patrol checkpoints and improves drug seizures training for Border Patrol agents.

“Our commonsense, bipartisan bill secures our border and strengthens our response to cross-border smuggling – allowing Border Patrol agents to do their jobs and keep dangerous individuals and drugs out of our communities,” said Sinema, Chair of the Border Management Subcommittee. 

Sinema’s CHECKPOINT Updates Act also enhances intelligence gathering at the Southwest border, ensuring consistent data collection to improve Border Patrol’s efforts to interdict human and drug smuggling.

Border Patrol Agents are currently required to collect data on checkpoint activity related to interdictions of human and drug smuggling. However, a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report from June 2022 found that Border Patrol agents inconsistently documented certain types of data collected at checkpoints, which makes it difficult for Border Patrol to assess checkpoint effectiveness or ensure proper resourcing. The Senator’s bill would implement GAO recommendations from this report to help secure the border and keep Arizona families safe and secure.

As Chair of the Border Management Subcommittee, Sinema has led bipartisan trips to Arizona to allow colleagues from non-border states to see what Arizona border communities experience every day in the interest of delivering lasting solutions to the ongoing crisis.