PNWER 07 2006

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Information about PNWER 07 2006

Published on April 3, 2008

Author: Urban


Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative:  Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative Ken Oplinger, President/ CEO Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry 360-734-1330 Tourism Working Group 2006 PNWER Annual Meeting – Edmonton, AB July 17, 2006 U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview Longest common border that is not militarized or actively patrolled 4,000 miles contiguous U.S.—5,500 altogether (U.S./Mexico border is 2,000 miles) 12 states, 8 provinces & 1 territory 51 million Americans and over 30 million Canadians 90% of Canadians live within 100 miles Facts U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview Trade $1.2 billion U.S./Canada trade/daily Supports 5.2 million jobs Travel/Tourism 2005: 32 million trips Americans to Canada 2005: 38 million trips Canadians to U.S. 2004: Canadians spent $10.3 billion in U.S., excluding travel costs ($7.9 billion for dining, gifts, hotels, etc.) Canadian spending up 39% over 10 years—U.S. travel surplus Economy U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview PNWER – US Trade $23.5 billion in trade with Canada in 2004 223,000 jobs in five PNWER states were supported by trade with Canada. Travel/Tourism 7.6 million Canadian trips generated $824 million in travel spending in 2004 Economy U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview PNWER – Canada Trade $78 billion in trade with US in 2004 Alberta provides 5% of crude oil (over half its total production) and 12% of natural gas consumed in the US Economy U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview Top Economic Value Economy Top Destinations U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview Economy Three Busiest U.S./Canada Border Crossings Total Value of Trade Detroit/Port Huron (~$450 million per day, #1 nationally & worldwide) Buffalo (~$160 million per day, #2 nationally) Pacific Highway/Douglas (~$40 million per day) U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview Restaurants and shopping (50% of Canadian visits) Work and family Athletic events 10%+ Tigers, North American International Auto Show and other ticket sales (much more for hockey) Olympics, Super Bowl, All-Star Game Theater, music, other Cultural Integration U.S./Canada Border Overview:  U.S./Canada Border Overview WHTI Background:  WHTI Background Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act (sec. 7209) signed December 2004 All travel into U.S. (includes U.S. citizens) Requires “passport or other document, or combination of documents” Implementation date: January 1, 2008 New Law WHTI Background:  WHTI Background Law gives DHS discretion to determine alternatives Expect the following will meet requirements: Passports Pre-clearance programs (e.g., NEXUS, SENTRI, and FAST) Also discussion of new northern border ID card (“Passport Lite”) Implementation Plans WHTI Background:  WHTI Background Passports Only 23% of Americans and 40% of Canadians have a passport (30% of Congress) Costs $97/person in U.S. 6-8+ weeks to process Pre-clearance programs Harder to get than passport $50 for NEXUS; 6-8 (or less) weeks to process No guaranteed access to lanes Just integrated/interchangeable at different ports (June 2006) Low enrollment (100,000 nationwide in NEXUS; only 6% of those eligible are in FAST) Proposal Assessment WHTI Background:  WHTI Background “Passport Lite”—new border ID (PASS Card) Similar documentation and wait times as passport Usable only at land borders Cheaper and easier to carry than passport ($55) Does not necessarily address spontaneous travelers Doesn’t apply to Canadians !!! Proposal Assessment Lackluster promotion and implementation of pre-clearance programs makes highly unlikely the prospect that DHS can successfully implement this far more ambitious plan. Policy Alternatives:  REAL-ID could meet WHTI without inventing a new ID Signed May 2005: state driver’s license or ID card cannot be used for any federal purpose unless it meets federal requirements by 5/2008 Federally regulated commercial aircraft, nuclear power plants, federally regulated critical infrastructure Policy Alternatives Recommendations Policy Alternatives:  Policy Alternatives Specified data/security features Standardized docs to establish ID Verification of doc authenticity Photo ID doc or non-photo with full legal name Doc showing birth date Proof of SSN or ineligibility for SSN Doc showing name and residence address Valid doc evidence of U.S. citizenship or legal U.S. presence Recommendations REAL-ID Minimum Standards Policy Alternatives:  States could provide option of indicating citizenship on driver’s license at renewal and application (border crossing for citizens only). Those with no objection to showing citizenship would have a document acceptable for crossing the border. Could work with feds—MOUs, credentialing, etc. to incorporate WHTI, bio indicators, etc. NY, MI, WA = 90% of problem solved—nationwide implementation not essential. Let northern border pursue. State-based solutions could prove MORE secure than PASS. Policy Alternatives Recommendations Policy Alternatives:  Greater chance of reciprocity from Canada Canadian federal government and various other government levels have submitted comments supporting this option. Michigan and Ontario driver’s license agencies already have met to explore a pilot. Michigan offered to self fund. KEY: Maintaining flow of Canadians into U.S. Policy Alternatives Recommendations Policy Alternatives:  Senator Stevens/Leahy/Stabenow et al Immigration amendment extends WHTI implementation to June 2009. Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  Senator Coleman/Collins/Dorgan Immigration Amendment: Extends WHTI implementation to June 2009 Requires triggers before implementation can occur Successful PASS Card pilot 90% of enrollees must have card in certain time frame (avg 4 wks) Demonstrated staff training Satisfactory public awareness Public awareness campaign with demonstrated awareness measures (including effort to inform public that law is not currently in place) Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  Senator Coleman/Collins/Dorgan Immigration Amendment: Calls for better expansion and incorporation of frequent traveler programs Requires collaboration with Western Hemisphere partners on encouraging citizens to get proper docs Applicability of PASS card at land and sea borders; land treatment of ferries; $20 cost cap; free for children Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  Senator Coleman/Collins/Dorgan Immigration Amendment: Process for allowing U.S. citizens w/o proper docs to leave and return to U.S. (72 hrs) Feasibility study on “how to” integrate WHTI and REAL-ID and a pilot project with at least two willing states and one willing province that are REAL-ID compliant Reports to Congress and approps authorizaton Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  June 29th – Stevens and Leahy attach modified Coleman amendment to Seante appropriations bills for both DHS and State. Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  Congressman Tom Reynolds (R-NY), chair of the Republican Congressional Fundraising Committee, will introduce Coleman as stand-alone legislation in the House. Policy Alternatives Who’s Listening Policy Alternatives:  Immigration bill is a shot—but not our only shot Must grow our coalition and efforts Beyond the border states/provinces Ongoing D.C. visits Media campaigns Issue ads (print) More powerful allies (we’ve got some good ones!) Canadians need to make key decisions and their government must relay them strongly to the US Above all, DON’T GIVE UP!!! Policy Alternatives BESTT - Improving the Odds Of Success What is BESTT?:  What is BESTT? A Partnership Coordinated by the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber, the Detroit Regional Chamber and the Buffalo Niagara Partnership. 100 Members from 10 states and 5 provinces Grassroots Focus – Specifically addressing effect on border communities What is BESTT?:  Three organizations agree to work on WHTI (7/05) Collaboration on federal rules response (9/05) First WHTI hearing (10/05) First D.C. Fly In (11/05) BESTT officially named (12/05) D.C. Fly-in with 200+ lawmaker contacts (2/06) On-going presence in D.C. ever since Travelled to Ottawa, Montreal, Vancouver, Niagara, Concord NH, McAllen TX, Chicago, Anchorage and many more in last six months What is BESTT? What have we accomplished?:  What have we accomplished? Addressed Northern Border Cong. Caucus, US C/C, CanAm BTA, Bi-national Tourism Alliance, US Senate, Canadian Senate and many others. Conducted Hill visits in February, 50 people hit 200+ members of Congress in 3 days. Formed partnerships with former Sen. Slade Gorton (9/11 commission) and Digimarc Corp. (largest provider of drivers’ licenses in North America) Raised awareness of WHTI on CNN, CBC, CTV, Fox News, CKNW, C-SPAN and countless print media outlets. Special relationship with the Canadian Embassy in DC Slide28:  More Information

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