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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly


[Congressional Record: May 7, 2002 (House)]
[Page H2137-H2142]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:cr07my02-102]                         



 
       ENHANCED BORDER SECURITY AND VISA ENTRY REFORM ACT OF 2001

  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and 
concur in the Senate amendments to the bill (H.R. 3525) to enhance the 
border security of the United States, and for other purposes.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Senate amendments:
       Page 2, line 4, strike out ``2001'' and insert ``2002''.
       Page 2, in the table of contents, after the item which 
     reads

``Sec. 203. Commission on interoperable data sharing.''
     insert:

Sec. 204. Personnel management authorities for positions involved in 
              the development and implementation of the interoperable 
              electronic data system (``Chimera system'').
Sec. 205. Procurement of equipment and services for the development and 
              implementation of the interoperable electronic data 
              system (``Chimera system'').

       Page 2, in the table of contents, strike out

            ``TITLE IV--ADMISSION AND INSPECTION OF ALIENS''

     and insert:

           ``TITLE IV--INSPECTION AND ADMISSION OF ALIENS''.

       Page 2, in the table of contents, after the item which 
     reads

``Sec. 403. Time period for inspections.''

     insert:

Sec. 404. Joint United States-Canada projects for alternative 
              inspections services.
       Page 3, after line 15, insert:
       (3) Chimera system.--The term ``Chimera system'' means the 
     interoperable electronic data system required to be developed 
     and implemented by section 202(a)(2).
       Page 3, line 16, strike out ``(3)'' and insert ``(4)''.
       Page 4, line 15, strike out ``(4)'' and insert ``(5)''.
       Page 4, line 19, strike out ``(5)'' and insert ``(6)''.
       Page 5, line 4, strike out ``(6)'' and insert ``(7)''.
       Page 5, line 16, strike out ``2002'' and insert ``2003''.
       Page 6, line 1, strike out ``2002'' and insert ``2003''.
       Page 6, strike out lines 17 through 20.
       Page 6, line 21, strike out ``(c)'' and insert ``(b)''.
       Page 7, line 2, after ``pay'' insert ``effective October 1, 
     2002''.
       Page 8, line 1, strike out ``(d)'' and insert ``(c)''.
       Page 8, line 10, strike out ``and''.
       Page 8, line 21, strike out ``(e)'' and insert ``(d)''.
       Page 15, line 11, strike out ``one year'' and insert ``15 
     months''.
       Page 15, line 13, strike out ``six months'' and insert 
     ``one year''.
       Page 16, line 12, after ``alien'' insert ``(also known as 
     the ``Chimera system'')''.
       Page 20, line 13, after ``about'' insert ``the''.
       Page 21, line 7, after ``of'' insert ``Central''.
       Page 22, line 2, strike out ``in this title'' and insert 
     ``in section 202''.
       Page 22, line 24, strike out ``against''.
       Page 23, after line 14, insert:

     SEC. 204. PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT AUTHORITIES FOR POSITIONS 
                   INVOLVED IN THE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION 
                   OF THE INTEROPERABLE ELECTRONIC DATA SYSTEM 
                   (``CHIMERA SYSTEM'').

       (a) In General.--Notwithstanding any other provision of law 
     relating to position classification or employee pay or 
     performance, the Attorney General may hire and fix the 
     compensation of necessary scientific, technical, engineering, 
     and other analytical personnel for the purpose of the 
     development and implementation of the interoperable 
     electronic data system described in section 202(a)(2) (also 
     known as the ``Chimera system'').
       (b) Limitation on Rate of Pay.--Except as otherwise 
     provided by law, no employee compensated under subsection (a) 
     may be paid at a rate in excess of the rate payable for a 
     position at level III of the Executive Schedule.
       (c) Limitation on Total Calendar Year Payments.--Total 
     payments to employees under any system established under this 
     section shall be subject to the limitation on payments to 
     employees under section 5307 of title 5, United States Code.
       (d) Operating Plan.--Not later than 90 days after the date 
     of enactment of this Act, the Attorney General shall submit 
     to the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on the 
     Judiciary, the Select Committee on Intelligence, and the 
     Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the 
     Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on the Judiciary, 
     the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and the 
     Committee on International Relations of the House of 
     Representatives an operating plan--
       (1) describing the Attorney General's intended use of the 
     authority under this section; and
       (2) identifying any provisions of title 5, United States 
     Code, being waived for purposes of the development and 
     implementation of the Chimera system.
       (e) Termination Date.--The authority of this section shall 
     terminate upon the implementation of the Chimera system.

     SEC. 205. PROCUREMENT OF EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES FOR THE 
                   DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE 
                   INTEROPERABLE ELECTRONIC DATA SYSTEM (``CHIMERA 
                   SYSTEM'').

       (a) Exemption From Applicable Federal Acquisition Rules.--
       (1) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     law, for the purpose of the development and implementation of 
     the interoperable electronic data system described in section 
     202(a)(2) (also known as the ``Chimera system''), the 
     Attorney General may use any funds available for the Chimera 
     system to purchase or lease equipment or any related items, 
     or to acquire interim services, without regard to any 
     otherwise applicable Federal acquisition rule, if the 
     Attorney General determines that--
       (A) there is an exigent need for the equipment, related 
     items, or services in order to support interagency 
     information sharing under this title;
       (B) the equipment, related items, or services required are 
     not available within the Department of Justice; and
       (C) adherence to that Federal acquisition rule would--
       (i) delay the timely acquisition of the equipment, related 
     items, or services; and
       (ii) adversely affect interagency information sharing under 
     this title.
       (2) Definition.--In this subsection, the term ``Federal 
     acquisition rule'' means any provision of title III or IX of 
     the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of

[[Page H2138]]

     1949, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy Act, the Small 
     Business Act, the Federal Acquisition Regulation, or any 
     other provision of law or regulation that establishes 
     policies, procedures, requirements, conditions, or 
     restrictions for procurements by the head of a department or 
     agency of the Federal Government.
       (b) Notification of Congressional Appropriations 
     Committees.--The Attorney General shall immediately notify 
     the Committees on Appropriations of the House of 
     Representatives and the Senate in writing of each expenditure 
     under subsection (a), which notification shall include 
     sufficient information to explain the circumstances 
     necessitating the exercise of the authority under that 
     subsection.
       Page 23, line 25, strike out ``an alien'' and insert ``each 
     alien''.
       Page 24, line 16, strike out ``202(a)(3)(B)'' and insert 
     ``202(a)(4)(B)''.
       Page 25, line 21, strike out ``October 26, 2003'' and 
     insert ``October 26, 2004''.
       Page 26, line 2, after ``comparison'' insert ``and 
     authentication''.
       Page 26, line 5, strike out ``each report'' and insert 
     ``the report required by that paragraph''.
       Page 26, lines 12 and 13, strike out ``October 26, 2003'' 
     and insert ``October 26, 2004''.
       Page 26, line 15, after ``visas and'' insert ``other''.
       Page 26, line 18, after ``tablish'' insert ``document 
     authentication standards and''.
       Page 26, line 19, after ``visas and'' insert ``other''.
       Page 26, lines 24 and 25, strike out ``October 26, 2003'' 
     and insert ``October 26, 2004''.
       Page 27, line 3, after ``comparison'' insert ``and 
     authentication''.
       Page 27, line 4, after ``visas and'' insert ``other''.
       Page 27, line 13, strike out ``and''.
       Page 27, line 16, strike out ``(c)(1).'' and insert 
     ``(c)(1); and''.
       Page 27, after line 16, insert ``(iii) can authenticate the 
     document presented to verify identity''.
       Page 27, line 22, strike out ``202(a)(3)(B)'' and insert 
     ``202(a)(4)(B)''.
       Page 28, line 2, strike out ``October 26, 2003'' and insert 
     ``October 26, 2004''.
       Page 28, line 9, strike out all after ``biometric'' down to 
     and including ``identifiers'' in line 10 and insert ``and 
     document authentication identifiers that comply with 
     applicable biometric and document identifying''.
       Page 28, line 16, strike out ``October 26, 2003'' and 
     insert ``October 26, 2004''.
       Page 28, line 17, after ``program'' insert ``under section 
     217 of the Immigration and Nationality Act''.
       Page 29, line 4, after ``mission'' insert ``to a foreign 
     country''.
       Page 29, line 23, strike out ``The committee'' and insert 
     ``Each committee established under subsection (a).''
       Page 30, line 1, strike out ``Periodic Reports'' and insert 
     ``Periodic Reports to the Secretary of State''.
       Page 30, line 1, strike out ``The committee'' and insert 
     ``Each committee established under subsection (a)''.
       Page 30, line 2, strike out ``quarterly'' and insert 
     ``monthly''.
       Page 30, line 5, strike out ``quarter'' and insert 
     ``month''.
       Page 30, after line 5, insert:
       (f) Reports to Congress.--The Secretary of State shall 
     submit a report on a quarterly basis to the appropriate 
     committees of Congress on the status of the committees 
     established under subsection (a).
       Page 30, line 6, strike out ``(f)'' and insert ``(g)''.
       Page 32, strike out all after line 22 over to and including 
     line 5 on page 33 and insert:
       (a) Reporting Passport Thefts.--Section 217 of the 
     Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1187) is amended--
       (1) by adding at the end of subsection (c)(2) the following 
     new subparagraph:
       ``(D) Reporting passport thefts.--The government of the 
     country certifies that it reports to the United States 
     Government on a timely basis the theft of blank passports 
     issued by that country.''; and
       (2) in subsection (c)(5)(A)(i), by striking ``5 years'' and 
     inserting ``2 years''; and
       (3) by adding at the end of subsection (f) the following 
     new paragraph:
       ``(5) Failure to report passport thefts.--If the Attorney 
     General and the Secretary of State jointly determine that the 
     program country is not reporting the theft of blank 
     passports, as required by subsection (c)(2)(D), the Attorney 
     General shall terminate the designation of the country as a 
     program country.''.
       Page 35, strike out lines 1 and 2 and insert:

              TITLE IV--INSPECTION AND ADMISSION OF ALIENS

       Page 35, line 10, strike out all after ``the'' down to and 
     including ``(a)'' in line 11 and insert ``President''.
       Page 37, line 2, strike out ``(i)'' and insert ``(j)''.
       Page 37, strike out lines 3 and 4 and insert:
       (3) by striking ``Sec. 231.'' and inserting the following:
       ``Sec. 231. (a) Arrival Manifests.--For
       Page 37, lines 9 and 10, strike out ``an immigration 
     officer'' and insert ``any United States border officer (as 
     defined in subsection (i))''.
       Page 37, line 19, strike out ``an immigration officer'' and 
     insert ``any United States border officer (as defined in 
     subsection (i))''.
       Page 39, line 9, strike out ``that'' and insert ``that,''.
       Page 39, lines 9 and 10, strike out ``, aircraft, or land 
     carriers'' and insert ``or aircraft''.
       Page 39, line 25, strike out ``$300'' and insert 
     ``$1,000''.
       Page 40, line 5, strike out ``, aircraft, or land carrier'' 
     and insert ``or aircraft''.
       Page 40, line 16, strike out ``prescribe.''.'' and insert 
     ``prescribe.''.
       Page 40, after line 16, insert:
       ``(i) United States Border Officer Defined.--In this 
     section, the term `United States border officer' means, with 
     respect to a particular port of entry into the United States, 
     any United States official who is performing duties at that 
     port of entry.''.
       Page 40, line 17, strike out all after ``Carriers.--'' down 
     to and including ``the '' the second time it appears in line 
     18 and insert:
       (1) Study.--The
       Page 41, after line 2, insert:
       (2) Report.--Not later than two years after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the President shall submit to Congress 
     a report setting forth the findings of the study conducted 
     under paragraph (1).
       Page 41, after line 22, insert:

     SEC. 404. JOINT UNITED STATES-CANADA PROJECTS FOR ALTERNATIVE 
                   INSPECTIONS SERVICES.

       (a) In General.--United States border inspections agencies, 
     including the Immigration and Naturalization Service, acting 
     jointly and under an agreement of cooperation with the 
     Government of Canada, may conduct joint United States-Canada 
     inspections projects on the international border between the 
     two countries. Each such project may provide alternative 
     inspections services and shall undertake to harmonize the 
     criteria for inspections applied by the two countries in 
     implementing those projects.
       (b) Annual Report.--The Attorney General and the Secretary 
     of the Treasury shall prepare and submit annually to Congress 
     a report on the joint United States-Canada inspections 
     projects conducted under subsection (a).
       (c) Exemption From Administrative Procedure Act and 
     Paperwork Reduction Act.--Subchapter II of chapter 5 of title 
     5, United States Code (commonly referred to as the 
     ``Administrative Procedure Act'') and chapter 35 of title 44, 
     United States Code (commonly referred to as the ``Paperwork 
     Reduction Act'') shall not apply to fee setting for services 
     and other administrative requirements relating to projects 
     described in subsection (a), except that fees and forms 
     established for such projects shall be published as a notice 
     in the Federal Register.
       Page 48, line 16, strike out ``or'' and insert ``and''.
       Page 49, line 4, strike out all after ``Compliance.--'' 
     down to and including ``reviews'' in line 7 and insert ``Not 
     later than two years after the date of enactment of this Act, 
     and every two years thereafter, the Commissioner of 
     Immigration and Naturalization, in consultation with the 
     Secretary of Education, shall conduct a review''.
       Page  49,  line  22,  strike  out  all  after  ``Reviews.--
     '' down to and including ``reviews'' in line 23 and insert 
     ``Not later than two years after the date of enactment of 
     this Act, and every two years thereafter, the Secretary of 
     State shall conduct a review''.
       Page 50, line 16, strike out ``(c) Effect of Failure To 
     Comply.--Failure'' and insert ``(c) Effect of Material 
     Failure To Comply.--Material failure''.
       Page 50, line 24, strike out all after ``1372),'' over to 
     and including ``be.'' in line 5 on page 51 and insert ``shall 
     result in the suspension for at least one year or 
     termination, at the election of the Commissioner of 
     Immigration and Naturalization, of the institution's approval 
     to receive such students, or result in the suspension for at 
     least one year or termination, at the election of the 
     Secretary of State, of the other entity's designation to 
     sponsor exchange visitor program participants, as the case 
     may be.''
       Page 54, lines 24 and 25, strike out ``proceeding'' and 
     insert ``proceedings''.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from 
Wisconsin (Mr. Sensenbrenner) and the gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. 
Jackson-Lee) each will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Wisconsin (Mr. 
Sensenbrenner).


                             General Leave

  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all 
Members may have 5 legislative days within which to revise and extend 
their remarks and to include extraneous material on H.R. 3525, the bill 
under consideration.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Wisconsin?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  Madam Speaker, since September 11, we have learned how deeply 
vulnerable our immigration system is to exploitation by aliens who wish 
to harm Americans. H.R. 3525 makes needed changes to our immigration 
laws to fight terrorism and to prevent such exploitation. I wish to 
thank the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr.

[[Page H2139]]

Gekas), the chairman of the Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims, for 
his invaluable assistance in crafting this legislation.
  This is the third time that the House has considered the main 
provisions of this bill. We first passed H.R. 3525 last December, and 
then we incorporated the provisions of the bill into H.R. 1885, which 
passed in March. Now that we have the other body's cooperation, I can 
safely say that the third time is a charm and that President Bush will 
sign this bill into law shortly after we vote on it today.
  I will briefly mention two of the bill's most significant provisions. 
Most importantly, it requires the Attorney General and the Secretary of 
State to issue machine readable, tamper proof visas that use 
standardized biometric identifiers. H.R. 3525 extends the same 
biometric identifier requirements to passports from visa waiver program 
countries.

                              {time}  1800

  While I preferred the House language requiring such enhanced visas to 
be issued as of October 2003, the amended Senate date of October 2004 
is acceptable.
  Second, building upon the enhanced data-sharing requirement of the 
USA PATRIOT Act, the bill directs our law enforcement agencies and 
intelligence community to share information with the State Department 
and the INS relevant to the admissibility and deportability of aliens. 
This information will be made available in an electronic database.
  Madam Speaker, this is important and long overdue legislation, and I 
urge my colleagues to support it.
  Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as 
I may consume.
  (Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas asked and was given permission to revise 
and extend her remarks.)
  Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas. Madam Speaker, let me just thank the 
chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary for again the perseverance 
and determination with respect to this legislation and to note that 
this is one of the first legislative initiatives that came through the 
House after September 11; the House moved quickly. Certainly, in the 
shadow of September 11, there was a definitive concern about the 
protection of this Nation and the security of its borders, and I 
certainly agree with that. I do appreciate the work of the other body 
and, of course, the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Conyers), the ranking 
member of the full committee, and the subcommittee chairman for their 
leadership on this issue.
  As I rise to support the Border Security and Visa Entry Reform bill, 
which all of us have given our approval to the extent that it addresses 
some gaping holes in a system that even without the horrific tragedy of 
September 11, it was our responsibility to correct, and I agree with 
that, I believe that we could and should make our borders more secure 
and certainly more responsive to the huge numbers of entries that we 
face all over the country, the northern border, the southern border, 
but also our other ports of entry.
  But as I rise to support this legislation, let me be very clear and 
be very cautious that it is important that we in this country separate 
out legitimate and focused immigration policy from the concept of 
ferreting out terrorists. This bill is to enhance our border security 
and to place safeguards on our visa entry system. It is not meant to 
keep out legitimate nonimmigrants who are coming for a specific purpose 
or to eliminate the possibility of immigrants coming to contribute to 
our economy and our communities; for example, our tourism visas that 
have been so vital in the exchange of cultures and the understanding of 
people from different places around the world.
  I am glad that this legislation provides for foreign consulates an 
opportunity to identify potential terrorists by establishing terrorist 
lookout committees. This is what we call collaborative. We are working 
with our neighbors, we are working with foreign consulates and 
countries who have committed to us that they too want to fight 
terrorism. We are doing it together in a nondiscriminatory fashion. 
That should be the key of any legislation that we pass in this House.
  In an effort to improve the ability of our foreign consulates to 
identify potential terrorists, this legislation establishes terrorist 
lookout committees at each U.S. post abroad. These lookout committees 
will ensure that names of suspected terrorists are included in the 
appropriate lookout databases and that those names are transmitted to 
the appropriate person in the consulate. This bill requires the 
establishment of a government-wide electric data-sharing system on 
persons with terrorist ties to be used by Federal officials to 
determine whether to grant visa applications or permit an individual to 
enter the United States.
  Additionally, the legislation prohibits visas from being issued to an 
alien from a country designated as a State sponsor of terrorism, which 
makes sense, unless the Secretary of State, after consultation with the 
Attorney General and other officials, determine that the alien poses no 
threat to the safety or security of the United States.
  Additionally, this legislation conditions country membership in the 
visa waiver programs on the country's timely sharing of information 
regarding the threat of blank passports. Relatedly, this legislation 
also requires that the Attorney General and Secretary of State enter 
stolen passport information in the interoperable data system promptly. 
This bill does address many of the issues that we are concerned with.
  Madam Speaker, let me, first of all, thank the chairman of the 
Committee on the Judiciary for his, again, persistence and 
determination in working through this legislation and working with the 
Senate. I might add my appreciation also to Senators Kennedy, 
Brownback, Feinstein and Kyl, and as well our ranking member, the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Conyers) and the chairman of the 
subcommittee, the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Gekas).
  But as I rise to support this legislation, let me be very clear and 
be very cautious that it is important that we in this country separate 
out legitimate and focused immigration policy from the concept of 
ferreting out terrorists. This bill is to enhance our border security 
and to place safeguards on our visa entry system. It is not meant to 
keep out legitimate nonimmigrants who are coming for a specific purpose 
or to eliminate the possibility of immigrants coming to contribute to 
our economy and our communities.
  I am glad that this legislation provides for foreign consulates an 
opportunity to identify potential terrorists by establishing terrorist 
lookout committees. In an effort to improve the ability of our foreign 
consulates to identify potential terrorists, this legislation 
establishes terrorist lookout committees at each U.S. post abroad. 
These lookout committees will ensure that names of suspected terrorists 
are included in the appropriate lookout databases and that those names 
are transmitted to the appropriate person in the consulate. This bill 
requires the establishment of a government-wide, electronic data-
sharing system on persons with terrorist ties for use by federal 
officials to determine whether to grant visa applications or permit an 
individual to enter the United States. Additionally, the legislation 
prohibits visas from being issued to an alien from a country designated 
as a state-sponsor of terrorism, unless the Secretary of State, after 
consultation with the Attorney General and other officials, determines 
that the alien poses no threat to the safety or security of the United 
States. Additionally, this legislation conditions country membership in 
the Visa Waiver Program on that country's timely sharing of information 
regarding the theft of blank passports. Relatedly, this legislation 
also requires that the Attorney General and Secretary of State enter 
stolen passport information into the interoperable data system 
promptly.
  This legislation waives a limitation on the hiring of full-time 
personnel, giving greater control to decision-makers at the border and 
increasing the number of border personnel. It raises the pay of INS 
naturalization service border personnel and provides Custom agents, 
Border Patrol, and INS inspectors with essential training and cross-
training. This bill focuses the agencies on the importance and the 
responsibility and gives them the tools and says to them, you must 
share intelligence, you must share information, you must help us thwart 
the terrible devastation of terrorists coming into this country or 
those coming here wanting to do harm.

  Funds are also authorized to enhance technology available to the INS 
and Customs Service to improve and expand technology and to facilitate 
the flow of people and commerce at our ports of entry. To offset the 
cost of such improvements, the Attorney General is authorized to 
increase land border fees and the State Department is permitted to 
raise

[[Page H2140]]

fees from the use of machine-readable visas. In addition, the Attorney 
General is required to use authorized funds for installing biometric 
data readers and scanners at U.S. ports of entry. One of the 
difficulties at the southern border was that the individuals coming 
across the Mexican borders have their biometric cards, but we did not 
have the staff nor the readers of those cards; and there was a great 
logjam of those individuals who were legally trying to access the 
United States and were doing everything that they should have done. We 
must not tolerate that, and improve the systems at the border.
  We must also improve our ability to monitor foreign nationals who are 
present in the United States. Consulate offices who issue visas will be 
required to transmit electronic versions of visa files to the INS so 
that critical information is available. A key failure on September 11, 
was there was no way to track individuals who had overstayed their 
visas, and there was no way to determine that they needed to be removed 
from this country.
  This legislation also gives greater direction to the integrated entry 
and exit system established in 1996 by IIRIRA, including use of 
specific technology standards and technologies to facilitate across the 
border. What this does, it provides the INS with state-of-the-art 
technology at our borders. There has to be a better way and a better 
system and that is to improve the technology of our particular needs at 
the border.
  We are also working with our consulate offices in ensuring that there 
is a relationship with the Secretary of State. Gaps still exist in the 
monitoring of foreign students. Accordingly, this legislation expands 
the monitoring program to include flight schools, language-training 
programs, and vocational schools; and it improves the reporting 
requirements on the INS as to the individuals going to these schools. 
In addition, this legislation requires the INS, in consultation with 
the Department of Education, to periodically review institutions 
enrolling foreign students and receiving exchange visitors to ensure 
that they adhere to the reporting and record keeping responsibilities.
  Let me also note that we are very gratified with the inclusion of 
language from the legislation that the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Reyes) 
and myself cosponsored that for all journeymen, border patrol agents, 
and inspectors who have completed at least 1 year of service and are 
receiving an annual rate of basic pay for positions GS-9 of the general 
schedule under section 5332 will receive an annual increase in their 
rate so that we can bind comparable and qualified individuals and 
provide a career pattern.

  Let me simply say in closing, Madam Speaker, that I too have a 
disappointment in the comparing of the needs of developing a real 
immigration policy with the needs of finding terrorists.
  Madam Speaker, just a few months ago, the House of Representatives 
passed this bill with the inclusion of Section 245(i). This bill that 
has come back from the Senate does not include that provision. I am 
aware that one Member from the other body held this up. How can this 
happen? How can we let it happen? The Extension of 245(i) is a simple 
measure that would allow for the adjustment of individuals who are 
here, who are accessing legalization in the right manner. Can we 
imagine that we could not bring this bill to the floor of the House 
having passed it once; to allow a simple adjustment so that these 
individuals could be reunited with their families. I am hoping that we 
will come to our senses and realize that immigration is not terrorism, 
that immigration is not lawlessness, that we are a country of 
immigrants and, as well, laws, and we should find a way to pass 245(i) 
to reunite our families.
  Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman 
from Pennsylvania (Mr. Gekas).
  Mr. GEKAS. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me this 
time, and I rise in support of the legislation.
  Madam Speaker, the American people have been insisting for quite some 
time now that we tighten up our borders, that we prevent terrorists and 
potential terrorists from entering into our country in the first place 
and, most certainly, that if they do happen to get through, to be able 
to track them down and to deport them or somehow prevent an act of 
terrorism that might be in their minds and hearts. So now, after 
September 11, that insistence has grown into a crescendo of demands by 
the American public that we do something.
  Here, we have the potential of taking gigantic steps in tracking 
those people who would come to our country under a student visa, shall 
we say, and then during the course of their academic curriculum at a 
particular institution, they either drop out and drop out of sight 
within our society, never to be seen again, or they come to the end of 
their student visa and again they drop off the face of the Earth into 
our society, and we sit around helpless as to where these individuals 
might be. That is why we have millions of illegal aliens in our 
country. That is part of the reason.
  This bill helps protect some systems that can, with high tech, make 
it possible to track all of these people. So would it not be a great 
thing to be able to see a student come to our country, legally so, 
properly so, and whom we would welcome with open arms, and then at the 
end of his visa when he finishes his years or her years of curriculum 
at a particular institution, that at that moment the privileges of the 
visa end and that individual goes back to his or her home country? That 
is a simple little equation that this bill helps to prepare and to 
execute. That is just one.
  But the other provisions of the bill tighten up our security by 
strengthening our capacity for border patrols and other screening 
processes which go across the board in a sweeping effort to heed what 
the American people are saying to us, tighten up the borders, prevent 
illegal aliens from coming in, and once they are in here, deport them 
or bring law enforcement measures against them.
  Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as 
I may consume.
  I appreciate the words of the chairman of our subcommittee, because I 
do think he highlighted several important aspects of what this bill 
does. I think that we should also say to the American people that we 
are working on issues that many of us spoke to even before the tragedy 
of September 11, and I think it is important to note that one of the 
reasons why we could not succeed with our immigration policies is a 
lack of staffing. This legislation focuses on the importance of hiring 
personnel at the border, full-time personnel, giving greater control to 
decisionmakers at the border and increasing the number of border 
personnel.
  It is interesting that one of the issues that we had was the lack of 
comparable pay, lack of professional training, and now we have that, 
and this legislation will include higher pay for our border service 
personnel and provides Customs agents and Border Patrol and INS 
inspectors with essential training and cross-training.
  One of the issues that came up after September 11 was the lack of 
intelligence-sharing. I have even seen an improvement over these last 
couple of months. We must focus on the fact that the law enforcement 
agencies must share information. This bill emphasizes that. It also 
expands technology.
  As a member of the Homeland Security Task Force, one of the major 
issues we talked about is increased technology aspects of the northern 
border and the southern border. How do we detect whether there is 
tainted food coming across the border, for instance? We are looking to 
expand the technology resources there.
  To offset such costs of such improvements, the Attorney General is 
authorized to increase land border fees and the State Department is 
permitted to raise fees for the use of machine-readable visas.
  One of the difficulties we have had at the southern border was that 
individuals coming across Mexican borders have their biometric cards. 
There have been a lot of accusations: why do you not use them? But we 
did not have the staff or the readers of those cards and there was a 
great logjam of those individuals who were legally trying to access the 
United States and were doing everything they could that they should 
have done, but we did not have the resources to deal with it.
  This bill places a priority on having those kinds of resources. It 
also gives us the ability to improve our monitoring of foreign 
nationals who are present in the United States, and consulate offices 
who issue visas will be required to transmit electronic versions of 
visa files to the INS so that critical information is available. This 
is a key response to September 11 when the State Department was issuing 
visas and those who had the responsibility for enforcement had no 
knowledge of

[[Page H2141]]

it. Now we have a situation where that data must be transformed, and it 
was a key element of concern of mine and one of the issues that we 
raised, both in legislation and with respect to this particular bill.
  This legislation also gives greater direction to the integrated entry 
and exit system established in 1996 by IIRIRA, including use of 
specific technology standards and technologies to facilitate across the 
border. What this does is it provides the INS with state-of-the-art 
technology at the borders. It also provides a working relationship, as 
I said, with the Secretary of State, the State Department, and 
consulate offices.
  Gaps still exist in the monitoring of foreign students, but this 
legislation again puts student tracking on the list by doing the 
following: it expands the monitoring to include flight schools, 
language training schools, and vocational schools. It seems interesting 
that when we had the testimony of those who owned the flight schools in 
Florida, that trained the terrorists of September 11, it did not strike 
them as funny or somewhat unique that these individuals would want only 
a specific type of training, training that did not require landing or 
taking off. I believe with a more secure tracking and notice of these 
individuals, more serious questions will be asked when individuals come 
for unique training in the United States. We certainly are open to 
students, but we recognize that we must be cautious and diligent in 
that kind of training.
  Let me simply say to my colleagues that this bill is an important 
bill, but this bill went to the Senate, the other body, with 245(i), 
and that is a bill that dealt with the reunification of families. The 
bill had been vetted, it had been studied, it had been subject to 
review here in the House, and that bill still stands idle without 
attention. The lack of attention to 245(i) does not serve us well, 
Madam Speaker. It is simply a bill that will allow for the adjustments 
of individuals who are here, who are accessing legalization, without 
them having to return to their country, maybe a country, of course, 
where they are jeopardized, or it may be a country where they are under 
threat of persecution.
  Therefore, it is important that 245(i) get its hearing here in the 
United States Congress. We need to pass 245(i). It is of great 
importance that we allow those who are standing in line, thousands who 
are standing in line for the right kind of access to legalization, who 
are here with the kind of support systems and family members who can 
help them access legalization; 245(i) needs to pass.
  Let me conclude my remarks by simply acknowledging an article by 
Daniel T. Griswold entitled ``Don't Blame Immigrants for Terrorism'' 
dated October 23, 2001. I would like to submit this for the Record and 
conclude my remarks by saying that this border security bill speaks to 
immigration as it should be spoken to, and that is a fair balance of 
ensuring that there is access to those immigrants who are fairly and 
legally accessing this country and access to those who are trying to 
earn access to legalization without the overall veil that immigration 
equates to terrorism.
  I believe that this is an important legislative initiative, and I ask 
my colleagues to support this legislation enthusiastically. I ask to 
submit this article into the Record: ``Don't Blame Immigrants for 
Terrorism'' by Daniel T. Griswold.

   [From the Assistant Director of Trade Policy Studies at the Cato 
                      Institute, October 23, 2001]

                  Don't Blame Immigrants for Terrorism

                        (By Daniel T. Griswold)

       In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the 
     Pentagon and the World Trade Center, the U.S. government must 
     strengthen its efforts to stop terrorists or potential 
     terrorists from entering the country. But those efforts 
     should not result in a wider effort to close our borders to 
     immigrants.
       Obviously, any government has a right and a duty to 
     ``control its borders'' to keep out dangerous goods and 
     dangerous people. The U.S. federal government should 
     implement whatever procedures are necessary to deny entry to 
     anyone with terrorist connections, a criminal record, or any 
     other ties that would indicate a potential to commit 
     terrorist acts.
       This will require expanding and upgrading facilities at 
     U.S. entry points so that customs agents and immigration 
     officials can be notified in a timely manner of persons who 
     should not be allowed into the country. Communications must 
     be improved between law enforcement, intelligence agencies 
     and border patrol personnel. Computer systems must be 
     upgraded to allow effective screening without causing 
     intolerable delays at the border. A more effective border 
     patrol will also require closer cooperation from Mexico and 
     Canada to prevent potential terrorists from entering those 
     countries first in an attempt to then slip across our long 
     land borders into the United States.
       Long-time skeptics of immigration, including Pat Buchanan 
     and the Federation for American Immigration Reform, have 
     tried in recent days to turn those legitimate concerns about 
     security into a general argument against openness to 
     immigration. But immigration and border control are two 
     distinct issues. Border control is about who we allow to 
     enter the country, whether on a temporary or permanent basis; 
     immigration is about whom we allow to stay and settle 
     permanently.
       Immigrant are only a small subset of the total number of 
     foreigners who enter the United States every year. According 
     to the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, 351 
     million aliens were admitted through INS ports of entry in 
     fiscal year 2000--nearly a million entries a day. That total 
     includes individuals who make multiple entries, for example, 
     tourists and business travelers with temporary and aliens who 
     hold border-crossing cards that allow them to commute back 
     and forth each week from Canada and Mexico.
       The majority of aliens who enter the United States return 
     to their homeland after a few days, weeks, or months. 
     Reducing the number of people we allow to reside permanently 
     in the United States would do nothing to protect us from 
     terrorists who do not come here to settle but to plot and 
     commit violent acts. And closing our borders to those who 
     come here temporarily would cause a huge economic disruption 
     by denying entry to millions of people who come to the United 
     States each year for lawful, peaceful (and temporary) 
     purposes.
       It would be a national shame if, in the name of security, 
     we were to close the door to immigrants who come here to work 
     and build a better life for themselves and their families. 
     Like the Statue of Liberty, the World Trade Center towers 
     stood as monuments to America's openness to immigration. 
     Workers from more than 80 different nations lost their lives 
     in the terrorist attacks. According to the Washington Post, 
     ``The hardest hit among foreign countries appears to be 
     Britain, which is estimating about 300 deaths . . . Chile has 
     reported about 250 people missing, Colombia nearly 200, 
     Turkey about 130, the Philippines about 115, Israel about 
     113, and Canada between 45 and 70. Germany has reported 170 
     people unaccounted for, but expects casualties to be around 
     100.'' Those people were not the cause of terrorism but its 
     victims.
       The problem is not that we are letting too many people into 
     the United States but that the government is not keeping out 
     the wrong people. An analogy to trade might be helpful: We 
     can pursue a policy of open trade, with all its economic 
     benefits, yet still exclude goods harmful to public health 
     and safety, such as diseased meat and fruits, explosives, 
     child pornography, and other contraband materials. In the 
     same way, we should keep our borders open to the free flow of 
     people, but at the same time strengthen our ability to keep 
     out those few who would menace the public.
       Immigrants come here to realize the American dream; 
     terrorists come to destroy it. We should not allow America's 
     tradition of welcoming immigrants to become yet another 
     casualty of September 11.

  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I yield myself the balance of the 
time.
  Madam Speaker, I would like to respond to two of the points that have 
come up during this debate, first with respect to the comments on 
section 245(i) made by the distinguished gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. 
Jackson-Lee). The House of Representatives has passed 245(i) 
legislation twice, once in May of last year and once in March of this 
year. The second passage of the 245(i) legislation was coupled with the 
same visa security and Border Patrol legislation that we are discussing 
here today.

                              {time}  1815

  The Senate, however, chose to pick this bill without 245(i), without 
the other bill which had 245(i) in it. That is why we are debating a 
245(i)-less bill today. So the decision to hold up 245(i) this time 
does not rest with the House of Representatives, but, unfortunately, 
with the other body.
  Secondly, with respect to the comments on student visa tracking made 
by the distinguished gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Gekas), he is 
absolutely right on that, but I would like to amplify the point that he 
made with one other fact.
  Much was said about the fact that Mohammed Atta and one of the other 
September 11 hijackers had their student visas approved by the INS 6

[[Page H2142]]

months after they died flying planes into the Twin Towers in New York 
City. But the really shocking statistic was not that, it was the fact 
that the student visas were approved 13 months after these two 
terrorists graduated from flight school. The purpose for which the 
student visas were applied for had been fulfilled, and they should have 
left the country promptly after their course of study was concluded. 
They did not, and the rest is history, and over 3,000 people died as a 
result of that.
  What this legislation does is that it provides a student visa 
tracking system so if someone enters the United States on a student 
visa and either does not show up at school, drops out of school, gets 
kicked out of school, or graduates from school, then the INS will know 
about it and take the appropriate action to make sure that those 
students return to their home countries.
  Had this type of a system proposed by this bill been up and 
functional on September 11, Mr. Atta and his conspirator would not have 
been in the United States to go to an American airport to hijack two 
American planes and to kill thousands of people.
  That is why it is important that this bill be passed, so that future 
Attas who wish to exploit the weaknesses in our visa system and to 
abuse the hospitality that is extended to them by the American people 
at American institutions will no longer be able to do so. I urge the 
House to concur in the Senate amendments.
  Mr. ORTIZ. Madam Speaker, as co-chairman of the House Border Caucus 
and a representative of South Texas, I rise in support of H.R. 3525, 
the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act and thank the 
House for moving this bill so quickly after Senate passage.
  It is an important bill for the security of the nation--and my 
district sits square on some of the real estate most affected by our 
border policies. It ensures safety for the people within this country's 
borders and provides the tools necessary to the U.S. Customs and the 
Immigration and Naturalization Service to better serve the American 
people.
  Most importantly for the taxpayers in my district, the bill also has 
a provision to extend the border crossing card deadline for residents 
along the Southwestern border of the United States. This extension will 
provide a much-needed boost to the economies that have suffered since 
the tragic attacks of September 11th.
  After the attacks, Congress stopped work on a stand-alone bill with 
bi-partisan support to extend the deadline for one year to October 1, 
2002. With the extension in today's bill, until Oct. 1, 2002, consumers 
whose lives transverse the border can conduct business normally again. 
Regular border shoppers can--after we finish this bill--use their 
border crossing cards to go to school, to go to work, to go shopping, 
or visit their families. They can once again participate in the border 
economy.
  The Southwestern border is vitally important to the United States. It 
is the gateway to the United States from Latin and South America. It is 
the port-of-entry for one of our most valued trading partners, and it 
represents the rich diversity of immigrants on which this country was 
founded. This bill is an excellent first step in recognizing that fact.
  The Southwestern border, according to a recent U.S. Chamber of 
Commerce report, has a population of 6.2 million people in the U.S. and 
approximately 4.3 million people in Mexico. The buying power of border 
residents is immense and the economy of South Texas depends on their 
participation in our marketplace. In my district alone, 75-80% of 
Brownsville's downtown retail sales normally come from people crossing 
the border.
  Since September 11th this number has dropped. This same report also 
cites the border crossing card deadline as one of the main reasons that 
fewer people are crossing the border. The economic effects of the 
attacks in September were bad for the country; they were devastating 
for the Southwestern border.
  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, I yield back the balance of my 
time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mrs. Biggert). The question is on the motion 
offered by the gentleman from Wisconsin (Mr. Sensenbrenner) that the 
House suspend the rules and concur in the Senate amendments to the 
bill, H.R. 3525.
  The question was taken.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. In the opinion of the Chair, two-thirds of 
those present have voted in the affirmative.
  Mr. SENSENBRENNER. Madam Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to clause 8 of rule XX and the 
Chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be 
postponed until tomorrow.

                          ____________________






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