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H.R. 3474 (115th): Border Security and Accountability Act of 2017

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jul 27, 2017.

Border Security and Accountability Act 2017

This bill directs the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), together with other specified departments, to submit to Congress and the Government Accountability Office a U.S. border protection strategy.

The Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 is amended to require that international land border control actions accord with that strategy.

DHS shall implement:

a monitoring and mitigation plan to address the ecological and environmental impacts of security infrastructure along the international land borders of the United States; and a plan to improve coordination among U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and other federal, state, local, or tribal authorities to improve efforts to combat human smuggling. CBP shall make available to the public information collected on migrant deaths occurring along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Except in a national emergency or when required for specific counterterrorism duties, the Armed Forces may not assist in federal, state, and local and civilian law enforcement of immigration laws.

DHS shall establish a Border Communities Liaison Office in every patrol sector at the southern and northern borders.

The bill prescribes requirements for enhanced border cooperation with Mexico, including in the areas of: (1) border security, (2) human trafficking and smuggling, (3) drug trafficking, (4) gang membership, and (5) violence and border deaths.

DHS shall establish a Southern Border Security Task Force.

The bill establishes the Southern Border Security Commission.

DHS shall:

issue policies regarding the use of force by DHS personnel; establish standards for the conditions of confinement for children in CBP custody; and consider safety and family concerns in any action related to the repatriation or prosecution of individuals apprehended for immigration violations. DHS may not establish any new border crossing fees for individuals crossing at land ports of entry along the southern and northern borders.

DHS must certify to Congress every six months, with specified exceptions, that it has only deported or otherwise removed a migrant from the United States through an entry or exit point on the southern border during daylight hours.

DHS shall make specified increases to the total number of full-time CBP officers and support staff at U.S. land ports of entry by September 30, 2022.

Each component of DHS shall comply with the Department of Justice Guidance for Federal Law Enforcement Agencies Regarding the Use of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, National Origin, Religion, Sexual Orientation, or Gender Identity.