New program eases wait times at South Texas border

Border Patrol - FILE (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Border Patrol - FILE (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

MISSION, Texas (AP) — South Texas border officials are relying on a new program to reduce the amount of time travelers must wait before entering the U.S.

It’s not unusual to wait as long as four hours to pass through security checkpoints at the Hidalgo-Reynosa, Anzalduas and other border crossings. Motorists waited that long Wednesday but The Monitor newspaper reports local authorities submitted an emergency request to U.S. Customs and Border Protection for extra personnel.

Such a request is now possible with the launch last August of an initiative allowing public and private partnerships to pay for additional personnel when needed.

A recent request for more staffing over five days will cost approximately $25,000. Local governments along with groups like the McAllen Chamber of Commerce cover the cost.

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