Tester: Improved communication coming to Montana’s northern border

Highway Patrol to invest in upgraded radio equipment

(U.S. SENATE) – Montana law enforcement agents will have better radio communication to strengthen security along Montana’s northern border, thanks to a grant announced today by Senator Jon Tester.

Tester, a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, urged the Department of Homeland Security to fund Montana’s application for the grant, which will allow law enforcement agencies to better communicate with each other.

In his request to DHS, Tester highlighted the coalition that works together to protect the border.

“As the Department and many homeland security experts have noted, interoperable communications are a critical element of border security,” Tester said.  “Particularly in Montana, where federal, state, tribal and local entities all share responsibility for securing a 545 mile stretch of border, interoperability is not a luxury – it is a necessity.”

Ed Tinsley, Administrator of the Disaster and Emergency Services Agency, and Major Tom Butler with the Montana Highway Patrol praised Tester’s work in strengthening security along the northern border.

“I appreciate Senator Tester working hard to secure these important Homeland Security resources for our ongoing efforts to protect the citizens of our state and nation,” Tinsley said. “Montana has a 545 mile northern border with Canada and these federal dollars will help ensure Montana and the United States has the ability to monitor and communicate potential threats that may affect our state and nation.”

“It is key that everyone working in law enforcement along the northern border is able to communicate and work together with each other,” Butler said.   “We appreciate Senator Tester’s leadership on securing the northern border and ensuring that the folks on the front lines have the resources we need to do our job.”

Tester has long been a champion of increased communication between the county, tribal, state and federal officers along the northern border.