Canada matches US hours at Port of Wild Horse

MEDICINE HAT, Alta. – Canadian border officials have changed their minds about not mirroring extended border hours next spring at the Port of Wild Horse north of Havre, Mont.

Starting March 1, people will be able to pass through the border between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m. Winter hours at the low traffic port remain between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection recently announced it would maintain the longer summertime hours through October and again between March and May of next year.

Canada originally said it wouldn’t follow suit, but according to the Great Falls Tribune, officials have responded to pressure to match the U.S. move.

"More traffic through the Port of Wild Horse means more good-paying jobs for the Hi-Line and across Montana," Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., said in a press release announcing the news. "It’s also a boon to business to have Canadians staying longer and spending money in our communities."

The Montana town of Havre has been lobbying to convert the Wild Horse crossing into a 24-hour commercial port, which would give cross-border truckers another option other than the Port of Sweetgrass.

Monitoring traffic flow during the extended hours would help determine whether there’s enough demand for another full-time commercial crossing between the province and Montana.

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