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House Rules Committee

Implementation of WHTI to be delayed until 2009

Rep. Louise M. Slaughter, Chairwoman of the House Rules Committee, announced that the House overwhelmingly voted to prohibit the implementation of Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) anytime …

Rep. Louise M. Slaughter, Chairwoman of the House Rules Committee, announced that the House overwhelmingly voted to prohibit the implementation of Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) anytime before June 2009.



The FY 2008 Homeland Security Appropriations Bill passed by the House of Representatives today by a vote of 268 to 150.



In addition to delaying WHTI, the bill also included language authored by Rep. Slaughter to withhold $100 million from the funds required by the Department of Homeland Security to implement WHTI until DHS has determined if driver`s licenses can be enhanced to meet the WHTI’s requirements.



The Slaughter language also requires DHS to fully test its proposed passport card before making it publicly available and develop a plan for land implementation that will be shared with the public. Finally, Rep. Slaughter`s provision requires that DHS submit a report to Congress on the success of the driver`s license pilot program, and reveal its overall WHTI roadmap before being allowed to put the proposed WHTI documentary requirements into place.



“After over two and a half years of fighting against WHTI, I am pleased to see that Congress overwhelmingly rebuked the Administration today by delaying the implementation of the flawed program until mid-2009,” said Rep. Slaughter. “We sent a clear signal that we don’t trust the Administration to get WHTI done right.”



“Travel and trade which cross the northern border every day between America and Canada are critical to our economy and to northern economic security, and we must never sacrifice our relationship with Canada in a misguided attempt to increase border security. I have long said that economic security and physical security are not mutually exclusive. We can, and must, have both.”

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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