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News stories tagged with "homeland-security"

McHugh: new border rules could be disaster

A new regulation at the international border is set to take effect at the end of the month. Beginning January 31, Americans returning from Canada will have to present proof of citizenship, such as an original birth certificate, in addition to a driver's license. Congressman John McHugh says the new rule hasn't been publicized and could be a disaster for travelers. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
An increasingly militarized US-Canada border
An increasingly militarized US-Canada border

Emergency vehicles delayed at US-Canada border

For generations, American and Canadian ambulance and fire crews have rushed across the border to each other's aid in times of emergency. But local officials on both sides of the border say new Homeland Security rules are creating dangerous delays, slowing response times and threatening partnerships that formed over a century ago. Federal officials promise improvements, but new passport rules could make the situation even more complicated. Independent producer Jacob Resneck has this special report.  Go to full article

Spitzer names Republican as homeland security chief

Governor Eliot Spitzer, a Democrat, scored a political coup when he persuaded a Republican State Senator to become his top homeland security advisor. On Wednesday, Michael Balboni gave his first public speech. Karen DeWitt was there.  Go to full article
Cong. John McHugh
Cong. John McHugh

McHugh skeptical of border report

Congressman John McHugh says a report on northern border security is "draconian" and goes too far. A Congressional task force concluded more than 10,000 troops are needed to secure the border with Canada. David Sommerstein has more.  Go to full article

Border Patrol plans ambitious recruiting

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol is stepping up recruitment. Their goal is to hire 6,000 new border patrol agents by the end of 2008. The agency now has about 12,000 agents nationwide. That's according to recruitment coordinator John Laturno of the Swanson Sector. He told Gregory Warner, it's an ambitious goal.  Go to full article
Coast Guardsmen get ready for their Waterway Watch presentation.
Coast Guardsmen get ready for their Waterway Watch presentation.

Coast Guard wants eyes on the border

If you're among the thousands of people making a splash in the St. Lawrence River this summer, the Coast Guard wants you. Its "Waterway Watch" program enlists river goers to keep their eyes peeled for suspicious activity - the kind of things a drug smuggler or potential terrorist might do. David Sommerstein went to a "training session" in Alexandria Bay and filed this report.  Go to full article
Coast Guard Auxiliary on patrol.  Below, a gap between the U.S. and Canada where smuggling was popular during Prohibition.
Coast Guard Auxiliary on patrol. Below, a gap between the U.S. and Canada where smuggling was popular during Prohibition.

A tour of smugglers' havens on the St. Lawrence

Among the people most likely to see suspicious activity on the river are members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary. Formed to patrol America's waters at the beginning of World War 2, the Auxiliary has more than 30,000 volunteers nationwide, more than 1000 across New York. After the Waterway Watch press conference, one volunteer gave his higher-up a tour of spots in the Thousand Islands that used to be popular for smuggling and could be again. David Sommerstein produced this Heard Up North.  Go to full article
Senator Clinton campaigning against the passport plan last summer in Massena.
Senator Clinton campaigning against the passport plan last summer in Massena.

"Passport-Lite" Plan Raises Border Questions

Last year the Department of Homeland Security announced a plan to require U.S. and Canadian citizens to show passports at the Canadian border. The proposal drew widespread opposition. Even President Bush said he was surprised to read about it. Yesterday, DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff unveiled a scaled down version of the plan. It would allow frequent border crossers to buy a cheaper, credit card-sized document. The new plan drew some praise in Canada and the U.S. travel industry. But for North Country leaders, it raises more questions than answers. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Fort Ann Keeps Dam Details Secret, Cites Homeland Security

In early July, an earthen dam in the town of Fort Ann gave way, flooding a neighborhood. No lives were lost, but 200 people were forced to evacuate and at least ten homes were destroyed. State Rt. 149, a major thoroughfare, was closed for weeks. The dam was brand new and failed only weeks after Hadlock Pond was filled with water. Town officials are now refusing to release documents describing the dam's construction. They cite Homeland Security laws and say release of the information could pose a security risk. Town officials didn't return phone calls for this report. Brian Mann spoke with Ken Tingley, managing editor of the Glens Falls Post Star, a newspaper which has filed two formal requests that the information be made public.  Go to full article

McHugh: Alternatives to Passport-Only Border Crossing Needed

Congressman John McHugh says Homeland Security officials still don't fully grasp the binational nature of the US-Canada border in the North Country. But he says hearings in Plattsburgh and Watertown are getting the message to Washington. David Sommerstein has the latest on the federal government's deliberations over which documents to require to cross the border.  Go to full article

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