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Border crossing may be hassle, but still not a state issue

Register • Aug 9, 2014 at 5:20 PM

Your Viewpoint editorial has some misconceptions and inaccuracies. (“Bill borders on being useful to area boaters” Register, Aug. 6).

Passports cost $135, but they are good for 10 years. A passport card is only $55 and is also good for 10 years. It is good for both Canada and Mexico.

The real problem is the difficulty in returning to the United States as there are only limited places to report back.

U.S. Customs (Homeland Security) will sell you an I68, which allows boaters to report in via cellphone. This costs $32, but is good for two people for only one year.

There is also a NEXIS pass but it is much more complicated to get. It will speed up your crossing by car or boat. It requires going to Detroit for a scheduled appointment. This card is good for five years.

If Customs (Homeland Security) would issue the I68 for 5 years at reasonable price, it would lower its their cost and the cost to boaters. Not to mention the hassle involved in obtaining the card or reporting in now experienced by boaters.

State Rep. Damschroder should be advised that international border crossing is controlled by the federal government, not the states. It might appear that his bill was designed to put more money in state coffers.

—David Taylor


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