The Customs and Border Protection Agency warns there may be delays at ports due to cuts being made under budget sequestration that went into effect March 1, 2013.
According to Deputy CBP Commissioner David Aguilar’s letter to industry groups, staffing cutbacks could decrease service levels in port cargo operations. “With fewer people to inspect containers, there could be delays of up to five days or more at major seaports and significant daily backups at land ports of entry”, David Aguilar said. He said, the CBP is required to make significant cuts for the rest of this fiscal year. Cuts include furloughs, reductions in overtime and a hiring freeze.
Security will continue to remain the agency’s highest priority, and will continue to run freight-related programs such as the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism and the Free and Secure Trade program, said Aguilar.
“CBP is very concerned about the ramifications of sequestration and we will endeavor to operate in a manner that is least disruptive to our mission and to your business”, Aguilar said.
For more details about the sequestration, and how it will impact travel and trade, please refer to the the CBP’s website.