Skip to comments.GOP seeking waiver of environmental laws at border
Posted on 10/27/2011 9:22:59 AM PDT by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON (AP) Federal agents trying to patrol the U.S.-Mexico border say they're hampered by laws that keep them from driving vehicles on huge swaths of land because it falls under U.S. environmental protection, leaving it to wildlife and illegal immigrants and smugglers who can walk through the territory undisturbed.
A growing number of lawmakers are saying such restrictions have turned wilderness areas into highways for criminals. In recent weeks, three congressional panels, including two in the GOP-controlled House and one in the Democratic-controlled Senate, have moved to give the Border Patrol unfettered access to all federally managed lands within 100 miles of the border with Mexico.
Two of the panels expanded the legislation's reach to include the border with Canada.
The votes signal a brewing battle in Congress that will determine whether border agents can disregard environmental protections as they do their job.
.. agents who have worked along the border say the laws crimp their power to secure the border.
Zack Taylor, a retired Border Patrol agent who lives about nine miles from the Arizona-Mexico border, said smugglers soon learn the areas that agents are least likely to frequent.
"The (smuggling) route stays on public lands from the border to Maricopa County," Taylor said, referring to the state's most populous county. "The smugglers have free rein. It has become a lawless area."
"For every problem that's out there in society, there's some extremists in Congress who say the solution is, 'Well, let's roll back the environmental laws, let's open up the public lands,'" said Paul Spitler, spokesman for the Wilderness Society. "It doesn't comport to reality, but it fits their mindset that it's simply the environmental regulations that are holding back America."
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Time to rollback the unfettered attack on this nation by groups that are too blind to see their own complicity.
We have to protect the environment from BP incursions into pristine lands. Meanwhile illegals are doing this .
The GOVERNMENT cannot go on GOVERNMENT LAND to enforce GOVERNMENT CONTROL OF THE BORDER, because of the GOVERNMENT?
The law of unintended consequences rears its ugly head again..who’d a thunk it?
Eliminate the regs. Some sand get into the creek. So what? Beats Hell out of being polluted with criminal.
One problem is Sierra Club and Wilderness Society don't mind criminals tearing up the land. They are more concerned about the Border Patrol and ATV's and their horses.
Rename them the “Border Region Environmental Protection Caretakers” and send them after illegals. The greens couldn’t be against environmental protection caretakers, could they?