Border Patrol: Goals and Measures Not Yet in Place to Inform Border Security Status and Resource Needs

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since fiscal year 2011, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has used changes in the number of apprehensions on the southwest border between ports of entry as an interim measure for border security as reported in its annual performance plans. In fiscal year 2011, DHS reported a decrease in apprehensions, which met its goal to secure the southwest border. Our analysis of Border Patrol data showed that apprehensions decreased within each southwest border sector from fiscal years 2006 to 2011, generally mirroring decreases in estimated known illegal entries. ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. February 26, 2013.

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Description

Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since fiscal year 2011, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has used changes in the number of apprehensions on the southwest border between ports of entry as an interim measure for border security as reported in its annual performance plans. In fiscal year 2011, DHS reported a decrease in apprehensions, which met its goal to secure the southwest border. Our analysis of Border Patrol data showed that apprehensions decreased within each southwest border sector from fiscal years 2006 to 2011, generally mirroring decreases in estimated known illegal entries. Border Patrol attributed these decreases in part to changes in the U.S. economy and improved enforcement efforts. In addition to apprehension data, sector management collect and use other data to assess enforcement efforts within sectors. Our analysis of these data show that the percentage of estimated known illegal entrants apprehended from fiscal years 2006 to 2011 varied across southwest border sectors; in the Tucson sector, for example, there was little change in the percentage of estimated known illegal entrants apprehended over this time period. The percentage of individuals apprehended who repeatedly crossed the border illegally declined across the border by 6 percent from fiscal years 2008 to 2011. Further, the number of seizures of drugs and other contraband across the border increased from 10,321 in fiscal year 2006 to 18,898 in fiscal year 2011. Additionally, southwest border sectors scheduled more agent workdays in fiscal year 2011 to enforcement activities for patrolling the border than for any other enforcement activity. The Tucson sector, for example, scheduled 73 percent of workdays for enforcement activities; of these, 71 percent were scheduled for patrolling within 25 miles of the border. Other sectors scheduled from 44 to 70 percent of enforcement workdays for patrolling the border. Sectors assess how effectively they use resources to secure the border, but differences in how they collect and report data preclude comparing results. Border Patrol issued guidance in September 2012 to improve the consistency of sector data collection and reporting, which may allow comparison of performance in the future."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • February 26, 2013

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Border Patrol: Goals and Measures Not Yet in Place to Inform Border Security Status and Resource Needs, text, February 26, 2013; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc295805/: accessed August 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.