February 23, 2005

Crapo: Idahoâ??s Borders Deserve Protection

Legislation introduced would fund prosecution of immigration cases

Washington, DC â?? Citing the need for homeland security and fairness, Idaho Senator Mike Crapo has joined with two Washington Senators to introduce the â??Northern Border Prosecution Initiative Reimbursement Act.â?? The legislation, introduced by Crapo, Maria Cantwell (D-Washington), and Patty Murray (D-Washington), would allow states with northern borders to be eligible for reimbursement of prosecution-related costs on immigration cases.â??Idaho and other northern border states are facing an increase in the costs related to prosecuting immigration cases, and much of this is attributable to homeland security concerns,â?? Crapo explained. â??Without the necessary resources to pay for cases initiated by federal authorities, other important local projects and programs will end up losing. This legislation simply allows Idaho and thirteen other northern border states to be reimbursed for prosecution-related costs, much in the same manner as southern border states currently receive offsets for the same type of activities.â??Boundary County Prosecutor, Jack Douglas, welcomed the news of the legislationâ??s introduction. Boundary County marks Idahoâ??s northern border with Canada. He said, â??The Northern Border Prosecution Initiative Reimbursement Act will bring welcome assistance to Boundary County. As prosecutor in Boundary County I welcome this initiative taken by Idaho's US Senator Mike Crapo.â??The Northern Border Prosecution Initiative Reimbursement Act would authorize $28 million in fiscal year 2004 for reimbursement of local prosecutors handling cases originating from arrests made by the Border Patrol and other cases involving federal immigration charges. A similar bill, H.R. 1238, was introduced in the U.S. House of Representative in March by Representative Rick Larsen (D-Washington). Under both measures, fourteen states would be eligible: Alaska, Idaho, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin. Last year, $40 million was provided to assist southern border states in offsetting the costs of prosecuting immigration cases.# # #FOR INTERESTED MEDIA: A radio actuality is available by calling 1-800-545-1267. Press 327 at any time during or after the greeting and instructions. You can also access the actuality through the Internet at http://crapo.senate.gov or www.senate.gov/src/radio.