Hanna proposes bill to prevent crossing fee on U.S. borders

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) recently introduced legislation to eliminate a potential crossing fee on pedestrians and passenger vehicles at American land borders.

President Barack Obama’s budget plan for the 2014 fiscal year includes a request to study the feasibility of charging admission for travelers coming into the United States at land crossings on U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico.

Hanna’s proposed bill, the Promoting Border Commerce and Travel Act, would prevent the creation of any new fees. The legislation’s co-sponsors represent northern border states, including Washington, North Dakota and Michigan.

“Canada is a part of our daily life in Upstate New York as people cross the border for purposes of work, tourism and shopping,” Hanna said. “Taxing pedestrians and passengers at our border would bring adverse economic impacts to communities and would go against efforts to collaborate with our biggest trading partner. I will work on as many fronts as possible to stop this bad idea.”

Hanna was one of 18 House members who recently sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano requesting the department to reject the president’s proposal. The letter was signed by both Democrats and Republicans.

“The imposition of such a toll would act as a barrier to the greater economic integration that we seek, and is the absolute last thing we should be doing to grow our economy,” the letter said.