For more than a year the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoints on Highway 86 and Highway 111 in Imperial County have been closed because of a lack of personnel and a policy that focuses all resources on a forward deployment along the border fences.
Border Patrol officials are supportive of the on-the-line effort ands they say it works. We have no reason to dispute such findings. However, as Border Patrol officials concede, the checkpoints are an important part of the effort to contain illegal immigration and drug trafficking. So we urge the Border Patrol to get those stations running again as soon as possible.
We are pleased to hear from El Centro Sector Chief Kenneth Stitt that he is working to get the stations manned within 18 months while maintaining the forward deployment. Stitt seemed to speak earnestly recently when he said he realizes the checkpoints are a key part of the effort and he wants the stations manned.