Tester Calls on Biden Administration to Extend Summer Hours at Northern Border Ports of Entry in Montana

In new letter to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Senator urges Administration to extend hours of operations at Port of Wild Horse

U.S. Senator Jon Tester sent a letter to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) calling on the Biden Administration to extend the hours of operations at ports of entry in Montana, citing the effects on Montana’s economy. 

In his letter to CBP Commissioner Troy A. Miller, Tester specifically calls on the Administration to extend the summer hours of operations at the Port of Wild Horse.

“The Port of Wild Horse and travel across the northern border is essential for farmers, ranchers, businesses, and families in northcentral Montana… for years, the Port of Wild Horse has extended its hours from May to September to account for the warmer weather and increased travel during the summer season. These extended hours are critical for the agricultural sector, tourism, and everyday trade and travel between the U.S. and Canada.”

Tester concluded his letter by calling on the Administration to reconsider the decision against extending hours during the summer season: “Actions like this show just how out of touch bureaucrats in Washington D.C. are with life in rural America. I strongly urge you to reconsider this decision and immediately expand summer hours at the Port of Wild Horse.”

Tester has consistently been an outspoken critic of the Biden Administration’s refusal to reinstate pre-pandemic hours of service and extend summer hours at Montana’s northern ports of entry. Last July, Tester introduce bipartisan legislation to require CBP to match or exceed pre-pandemic hours at northern ports of entry.  

Last year, Tester also led a bipartisan letter to CBP pressing the agency to return the hours of operations at northern ports of entry to pre-pandemic hours or, at minimum, match the operating hours of Canadian ports. He also sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) urging an extension of the hours of operations at ports of entry in Montana.

Tester also called on the Biden Administration to fully reopen all ports of entry in Montana to pre-pandemic hours and terminate the vaccination requirements for Canadian truck drivers entering the United States through land ports of entry. His letter came directly after meeting with Montana farmers and business owners who rely on trade and travel across the northern border via Ports like Raymond, Opheim, and Morgan.

Montana shares a 545 mile border with Canada and is home to many border towns whose economies rely on Canadian trade and commerce. According to the Canadian Trade Commissioner, Canada is Montana’s top international trading partner, buying more from the state than the next six states combined. Reports by the U.S. Trade Representative estimate that Montana exported $692 million in goods to Canada is 2018, representing 42 percent of the state’s total goods exports.

Tester’s letter to CBP can be read HERE.