The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that Guam is among several international ports selected as potential participants for Reimbursable Services Agreements for 2016. The Reimbursable Services Program (RSP) enables partnerships between CBP and private sector or government entities, allowing CBP to provide additional inspection services upon the request of stakeholders. These services can include customs, immigration, agricultural processing, border security, and support at Ports of Entry, and may cover costs such as salaries, benefits, overtime expenses, administration, and transportation costs. The program was authorized by section 559 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014.
In February, CBP accepted over 50 applications from stakeholders associated with ports of entry around the country, and after evaluating the merits based upon factors such as potential impact on current operations, community and economic needs and benefits, and feasibility, selected 29 tentative finalists, including the Guam International Airport. Guam International Airport’s selection allows them to enter into negotiations with CBP to discuss the details of how RSP can be implemented in Guam.
“I applaud the decision to potentially include Guam in the Reimbursable Services Program for 2016. While it does not guarantee that Guam will ultimately be considered for the program, it is an important step forward in addressing the lengthy immigration lines that travelers experience at the Guam International Airport,” said Congresswoman Madeleine Z. Bordallo. “I have called for us to explore creative and long-term solutions to reduce unnecessarily long wait times at the airport, and participating in the reimbursable fee program would contribute to this effort. I applaud the work of Guam International Airport and tourism stakeholders on Guam for applying for this program. I have been supportive of this approach and stand ready to see it implemented so we can find immediate ways to address long immigration lines. Further, I am looking at other ways to address long immigrations lines at the international airport for the long-term. I will continue to communicate the need for flexibility with CBP in their staffing patterns and look forward to continuing to work with stakeholders on Guam to find a more long-term resolution to this issue.”