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Jun 7, 2013

Tester introduces bill to strengthen America’s borders

(GREAT FALLS, Mont.) - Senator Jon Tester is introducing a bill to strengthen America's borders by making sure the nation's top border security agency has the manpower it needs to keep Americans safe.

Tester's measure makes the U.S. Border Patrol's pay system more predictable and ensures that the agency has enough agents to combat drug smuggling and illegal immigration. Under the current system, which is older than many of the agency's agents, border agents often work unpredictable overtime schedules that result in border security gaps during shift changes.

Improving the pay system and the use of overtime will increase Border Patrol manpower by 20 percent and prevent gaps in border coverage.

"Border Patrol agents put in long hours in remote parts of our country to protect Americans and stop folks from entering the country illegally." said Tester, chairman of the Senate Governmental Affairs subcommittee that oversees the federal workforce. "This bill ensures that they receive fair pay so they can better protect us and provide for their families."

The National Border Patrol Council, which represents Border Patrol agents, and the American Federation of Government Employees strongly support Tester's bill.

"Keeping our nation's border secure means agents have to be on alert from the minute they clock in," said National Border Patrol Council Vice President and Conrad, Montana native Jonathan Perkins. "But wondering how much money will be in our paycheck makes it harder for us to do the jobs we signed up to do. Senator Tester has been a leader in getting Border Patrol the support we need, and his bill improves our ability to strengthen all of America's borders."

Tester's bill is expected to save taxpayers at least $60 million annually.


Office Contact Information

Senator Tester's Montana staff serves the state from offices in Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Glendive, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell, and Missoula. Please bring your concerns with federal agencies, academy nominations, and other situations to one of these Montana offices.


Judge Jameson Federal Building
2900 4th Ave N, Suite 201
Billings, MT 59101
Phone: (406) 252-0550
Fax: (406) 252-7768


Avant Courier Building
1 E Main Street, Suite 202
Bozeman, MT 59715
Phone: (406) 586-4450
Fax: (406) 586-7647


Silver Bow Center
125 W Granite, Suite 200
Butte, MT 59701
Phone: (406) 723-3277
Fax: (406) 782-4717


122 W Towne
Glendive, MT 59330
Phone: (406) 365-2391
Fax: (406) 365-8836

Great Falls

119 1st Avenue N, Suite 102
Great Falls, MT 59401
Phone: (406) 452-9585
Fax: (406) 452-9586


Capital One Center
208 N Montana Avenue, Suite 202
Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 449-5401
Fax: (406) 449-5462


8 Third Street E
Kalispell, MT 59901
Phone: (406) 257-3360
Fax: (406) 257-3974


130 W Front Street
Missoula, MT 59802
Phone: (406) 728-3003
Fax: (406) 728-2193

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