Magazine article National Defense

Reshuffling under Way at Homeland Security

Magazine article National Defense

Reshuffling under Way at Homeland Security

Article excerpt

The office of air and marine operations (AMO) has been transferred from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to Customs and Border Protection (CBP), a move that demonstrates DHS' intent to integrate air and marine law enforcement personnel, missions and assets.

"The Department of Homeland Security was created to streamline and focus our efforts to secure the United States. This merger is another large step in that direction," said Asa Hutchinson, undersecretary for border and transportation security.

This transition is occurring in two phases. The planning phase was declared complete on October 31. The integration of all CBP air and marine personnel, missions and assets will occur in the second phase, which is expected to be complete by the end of 2005. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit has been plagued with a budget shortfall approaching $500 million.

At no time will there be a drop in air or marine support to legacy missions in any of the agencies served by these resources, Hutchinson added.

AMO currently has 11 air and marine branches, a pair of surveillance support branches, 11 air units and 16 marine units, located across the southern tier of the United States and Puerto Rico. …

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