Senate hearing focused on strategies to improve border security, trade, and travel at Arizona ports of entry
WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema today led a Senate Government Operations and Border Management Subcommittee hearing on improving border security, trade, and travel at land ports of entry at the Southwest Border. Sinema heard testimony from key witnesses, including Guillermo Valencia, former president of Santa Cruz County Port Authority, and Kevin McAleenan, former Acting Secretary of Homeland Secretary.
“Our ports along the southwest border play a critical role in facilitating trade and ensuring the safety, prosperity, and economic security of the American people… Our ports are also the key link to securing our border. Most seizures of illicit drugs at our border happen at ports of entry. It is critical that we ensure we are making the right security investments at our ports of entry,” said Sinema, Chair of the Senate Government Operations and Border Management Subcommittee.
During the hearing, Sinema stressed the importance of cross-border security, trade, and travel for Arizona—highlighting how ports play a critical role in ensuring the safety, prosperity, and economic security of the United States. The hearing featured witnesses focusing on workforce, travel and trade, and security challenges at ports of entry.
Sinema underscored how land ports are the key link to securing the border. Slowing the flow of illegal goods and drugs, while also maintaining efficient flow of trade and travel are essential for national security. Sinema stressed that improved border security requires a strong border workforce and innovative technology. Today’s hearing examined current challenges at the Southwest Border, and the appropriate technology, infrastructure, and personnel investments needed to solve them.
In February, Sinema and Arizona Senator Mark Kelly called on the administration to include robust funding for Arizona’s ports of entry. The Senators specifically called for funding for Arizona’s San Luis I Port of Entry modernization project, the construction of a new Commercial Port of Entry and the update of the Raul H. Castro Post of Entry in Douglas, AZ, and an update to the DeConcini Port of Entry in Nogales, AZ.