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Government to fund expansion at border crossing facility in Lacolle, Que.

OTTAWA, Ont. -- The Government of Canada will be committing $10 million to expand the Canada Border Services Agency...

OTTAWA, Ont. — The Government of Canada will be committing $10 million to expand the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) facilities at the Lacolle-Champlain border crossing, one of the 10 busiest Canada-US border crossings.

Funded through the Gateways and Border Crossings Fund, the project consists primarily of the expansion of commercial and bus processing facilities. The project is designed to improve border infrastructure along the Canadian side of the corridor, enhance safety, and relieve traffic congestion.

“This government is committed to maintaining a smart and secure border, and that starts with the proper facilities,” said the Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety, who made the announcement earlier today. “This funding will go towards enhancing the capacity of one of Canada’s most important land border crossings and recognizes the critical importance of the border in ensuring Canada’s security and its economic prosperity.”

“The Government of Canada’s funding for this initiative will help to maintain the competitive position of the Lacolle crossing, a key trade corridor to the United States,” said the Honourable Lawrence
Cannon, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities. “Improvements to the existing commercial and bus processing facilities will also complement the capacity improvements resulting from significant infrastructure investments on the US side of the border crossing.”

“Our members always welcome such infrastructure improvements. This particular investment will provide Border Services Officers with a state of the art facility at Quebec’s busiest border crossing,” said Jean-Pierre Fortin, Customs Excise Union’s 1st National vice-president. “This will improve the flow of legitimate commercial and traveller volumes, thus providing officers with a safer work environment, allowing them to direct more attention on high-risk individuals and goods.”

Lacolle is the sixth-busiest Canada-US commercial border crossing. In 2006, Lacolle accounted for approximately 735,000 commercial vehicle crossings (398,000 to the US and 337,000 to Canada), and approximately 2,000 commercial vehicles per day.

This week’s Budget announcement injected $174 million over two years to make the border smarter and more secure. This includes $75 million for CBSA operations and $14 million to expand the NEXUS program.

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