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H.R. 5399 (117th): National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act

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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 Mar 31, 2022.

National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act

This bill prohibits the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture from restricting certain U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) activities pertaining to border enforcement and addresses related issues.

Specifically, neither department may impose restrictions on CBP actions taking place on federal land under their respective jurisdictions and located within 100 miles of an international border if the CBP actions involve search and rescue operations and the prevention of all unlawful entries into the United States. CBP shall have immediate access to such federal lands to conduct various activities, including the installation and maintenance of roads, barriers, and surveillance equipment.

Furthermore, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may waive the application of certain legal requirements on such federal lands if DHS determines that the waiver is necessary to ensure the expeditious construction of border barriers and roads. DHS may waive only specified laws, including the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the National Historic Preservation Act, and certain provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act.