Tester, McCain bill to reform border patrol pay heads to Presidents desk
Senators’ bill unanimously passes U.S. House
(U.S. Senate) – Senators Jon Tester and John McCain’s bill to reform the Border Patrol pay system unanimously passed the U.S. House today and now awaits the President’s signature before becoming law.
Tester and McCain’s bill reforms a complicated and inefficient overtime pay system and holds the Border Patrol more accountable for how it spends taxpayer money. Their bill would save up to $100 million each year, according to the non-partisan Government Accountability Office.
“Taxpayers want Congress to work together to save money, make government work better and strengthen our national security,” said Tester, chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee that oversees the federal workforce. “Our Border Patrol Agent Pay Reform Act represents the kind of common-sense leadership that should happen every day, and I look forward to seeing the President sign it into law.”
“I am pleased that the House has passed this common-sense solution to provide much-needed stability to our nation’s border patrol pay scale,” said Senator John McCain. “Spending cuts due to sequestration, coupled with an archaic and inefficient pay scale, put at risk the safety of Border Patrol Agents and threaten to reverse much of the progress these agents have made along the border over the last few years. I hope that the President will quickly sign this much-needed reform into law and expedite this effort to improve the security of our borders.”
The Senators introduced their bill last year in the wake of a government report showing Homeland Security employees were abusing an outdated pay system. Tester and McCain’s legislation allows Border Patrol Agents to choose between three pay schedule options and work either 100 hours (20 hours of overtime), 90 hours (10 hours of overtime), or 80 hours (no overtime) per pay period.
Brandon Judd, National Border Patrol Council National President, praised the House for passing the legislation:
“The men and women of the U.S. Border Patrol would like to thank Senator McCain (R-Ariz.) and Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and Representative Beto O’Rourke (D-Tex.) for their tireless efforts. We are honored to have worked with these longtime friends and advocates of Border Patrol Agents, our nation’s first line of defense.”
Tester and McCain’s bill is co-sponsored by Senators co-sponsored by Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and John Cornyn (R-Tex.).