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  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      House Committee on Homeland Security
      Border and Maritime Security
      House Committee on Foreign Affairs
      House Committee on the Judiciary
      Immigration and Border Security
      House Committee on Ways and Means
    IntroducedJuly 31st, 2013

Bill Details

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BEST Act of 2013

Official Title

To secure the borders of the United States, and for other purposes.


Border Enforcement, Security, and Technology Act of 2013 and BEST Act of 2013 - Directs the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) to develop: (1) a comprehensive technology plan for the security of the international borders of the United States, and (2) a National Strategy for Border Security to achieve operational control over all ports of entry into the United States and the international borders of the United States. Directs the Secretary to address Border Patrol and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recruitment and retention challenges. Authorizes the Secretary to increase the number of CBP officers. Directs the Secretary to conduct a pilot program to provide a tactical cellular testbed on the southwest U.S. border that serves as a communications platform and an intelligence data transport layer between a dismounted team and the nearest communications node. Directs the Secretary to establish: (1) a mandatory exit data system by December 31, 2015, that includes data collection from machine-readable visas, passports, and other travel and entry documents for all categories of aliens who are exiting from air and sea ports of entry; and (2) a mandatory biometric exit data system within two years at the ten U.S. airports that support the highest volume of international air travel. Directs the Comptroller General (GAO) to report to Congress regarding: (1) registered traveler programs, and (2) the number and country of origin of non-deportable aliens who have been released into the United States over the past 10 years. Directs the Secretary to issue a rule regarding the procedural and record keeping requirements associated with border security searches of electronic devices. Directs the Inspector General (of DHS) to report to Congress regarding CBP-Coast Guard coordination of land and maritime border enforcement efforts. Establishes the Department of Homeland Security Border Oversight Task Force. Directs the Secretary to: (1) work with Canadian and Mexican government officials to assess the needs of Central American countries to maintain their border security and to determine the related support needed by such countries from the United States, Canada, and Mexico; (2) provide Mexico with assistance to help secure its southern border from undocumented aliens, drugs, weapons, and other contraband; and (3) work with government officials of Caribbean countries to address maritime border security. Directs the Secretary to establish standards for appropriate treatment of immigration detainees, including guidelines for children at family detention centers. Authorizes appropriations for detention program alternatives. Directs the Secretary, with respect to aliens apprehended and detained by the Border Patrol, to: (1) ensure adequate access to food and water; (2) ensure that information is provided concerning such alien's rights, including the right to contact a representative of his or her government; and (3) establish a database containing family member, medical, and location information.

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