Truck News: Pilot project could reduce operational hours at Port of Raymond

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following a battle with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in early December 2015, the offices of Montana Senator Steve Daines and House Representative Ryan Zinke said they are again attempting to stop an effort to close the Port of Raymond’s 24-hour operating status.

“Past and present efforts by CBP to reduce operational hours at the Port of Raymond fail to recognize the importance of cross boarder travel to local and regional economic activity,” Daines and Zinke wrote in a letter to CBP.

Daines’ office said the CBP plans to implement a new 60-day pilot program starting March 1 that would see the port closed between the hours of 1 a.m. and 7 a.m.

“Montana’s largest foreign trading partner is Canada. Over 25,000 Montana jobs are supported by trade with Canada. In 2014, Canada purchased approximately $564 million of Montana’s goods – 36.5% of the state’s total exports,” Daines and Zinke continued in their letter to CBP. “As voices for Montana in the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives, we urge CBP to suspend this latest attempt to unduly harm rural regional commerce by reducing the Port of Raymond’s hours of operation.”

The Port of Raymond is border crossing between Regway, Sask. and Raymond, Mon. Should the pilot project go through, those wishing to cross the Canada-U.S. border between the hours of 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. would have to do so either at the Portal, N.D. or Sweetgrass, Mon. Port of Entry.