Tester kicks off national and domestic security tour with DHS Deputy Secretary

Senator discusses law enforcement and emergency response issues in Helena

(Helena, Mont.) – Senator Jon Tester today kicked off a two-day Montana tour with Department of Homeland Security Deputy Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to highlight national and domestic security issues.

Tester, a senior member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, and Mayorkas began their tour in Helena with listening sessions on law enforcement and emergency response.

“With threats circling all around us, we must work hard to ensure law enforcement and first responders have every tool they need to keep our state and nation secure,” Tester said. “There is nothing more important than keeping our families, communities and borders safe and protected. The information we gather from folks on the ground will inform how best to stand firm against domestic and international threats.”

Tester heard from U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials about drug trafficking as well as the communications and technical difficulties local and state law enforcement agencies face when working with federal agencies. Tester, who also serves on the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, heard from local firefighting agencies about the importance of AFG and SAFER grants to help train firefighters and provide critical funding for equipment.

Tester and Mayorkas heard from the following law enforcement officials and first responders:

Tim Lambourne, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Assistant Chief Patrol Agent
Craig Duff, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Operations Officer
Leo Dutton, Lewis and Clark County Sheriff
Tom Butler, Montana Highway Patrol Colonel
Matthew Quinn, Montana National Guard Adjutant General
Joseph Thaggard, Criminal Chief, U.S. Attorney’s Office
Doug Neil, Montana State Firemen’s Association
Steve Hester, Great Falls Fire & Rescue Chief
Sean Logan, Helena Fire & Rescue Chief