The House Appropriations Committee took testimony from Acting U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan this week, regarding the CBP’s portion of the Trump administration’s proposed FY 2021 budget.
For CBP, that portion amounts to a more than $18.2 billion budget authority, with the bulk of it coming in the form of net discretionary funds. Those funds would amount to $15.6 billion under the current proposal. They would be further buoyed by $2.6 billion in what the organization calls critical investments, such as $2.3 billion for border security, $34 million for trade and travel operations, $72 million for integrated operations, and $177 million for mission support.
“CBP’s success in achieving its complex, vital mission of protecting the American people, safeguarding our border, and enhancing the Nation’s economic prosperity requires the right combination of trained and dedicated personnel, intelligence-driven and risk-based strategies, collaborative partnerships, tactical infrastructure, and advanced technology,” Morgan said to the committee. “The President’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 Budget commits resources that will be used to attain this strategic combination and continues prior commitments to fund initiatives crucial to the success of our mission.”
Notably, the net discretionary budget this time around is $801 million more than it was in FY 2020. At the same time, the budget proposes to rely more heavily on user fees at ports of entry.
“We must be ever-vigilant in border security and enforcement, counterterrorism, and in targeting and countering TCOs and any other group or individual who may seek to harm or threaten the United States,” Morgan said. “CBP must always be mindful of our responsibility to all those we encounter to ensure the people in our custody are treated with the utmost respect and humanity and provided due process under the law. The only way to accomplish this is to ensure CBP has sufficient resources, technology, and manpower.”
CBP currently oversees approximately 62,697 employees.