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Heinrich, Casey Lead Push to Increase Funding for Border Security and Anti-Drug Trafficking

Senators push for more border security officers, surveillance technology to detect drugs coming in and guns going out in FY25 spending bill

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Bob Casey (D-Pa.) led 15 of their colleagues in a letter to Senate Appropriators urging them to provide the United States with the tools to combat the fentanyl crisis by continuing robust funding for border security and drug interdiction initiatives. 

In their letter, the senators push for funding for U.S. Customs and Border Protection to hire additional agents and purchase more surveillance technology for official ports of entry along the southern border, where illicit drugs are being smuggled in and firearms and currency are being trafficked out of the U.S. to be used by Mexican cartels. The senators also request more funding for U.S. law enforcement to investigate trafficking crimes and the transnational organizations perpetuating the fentanyl crisis in the United States. 

“We ask you to build upon past bipartisan investments to ensure that law enforcement officers at our Nation’s borders are equipped to combat the flow of fentanyl and other illicit drugs. We also ask you to provide robust funding to support the law enforcement agencies that are investigating smuggling and trafficking crimes and working to disrupt the transnational criminal networks that threaten our country and our communities,” the senators wrote. 

Heinrich has led a number of recent efforts to combat the opioid epidemic and protect communities from illicit fentanyl, while helping those struggling with addiction.   

Recently, Heinrich helped secure the passage of legislation he cosponsored, the FEND Off Fentanyl Act, into law. This new law will target the fentanyl crisis by wielding our country’s economic tools against transnational criminal organizations.

In March, through his position on the Senate Appropriations Committee, Heinrich secured substantial federal funding to combat the fentanyl crisis, as well as report language to establish the creation of a comprehensive fentanyl tracking system and to remove barriers to access for opioid use disorder medications.  

Heinrich is also a cosponsor of the Stop Fentanyl at the Border Act, legislation that would enable U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to hire more Officers and Border Patrol Agents to increase capacity to stop illicit smuggling over the border.  

A more extensive list of Heinrich’s actions to tackle the fentanyl crisis can be found here.

Full text of the letter can be found HERE.