News Releases

Cargo Security – Murray Announces Victory in Funding Her Port Security Bill

Sep 12 2006

Murray's Negotiations Deliver the Funding to Implement New Security Measures

UPDATE: The Senate Passed Senator Murray’s Bill on 9/14/06

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash) succeeded in securing funding for her GreenLane cargo security bill, which is being debated this week on the Senate floor. Murray, who began working on the bill shortly after the September 11th terrorist attacks, said the new funding agreement resolves one of the biggest obstacles facing the bill.

"We just made a strong security bill even stronger by ensuring we have the money to hire more customs inspectors, track and monitor cargo, and secure our ports," Murray said this afternoon after the Senate passed her funding amendment to the broader cargo security bill.

Murray and Republican Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) introduced the GreenLane cargo security bill last year. Last week, the full Senate finally began debating the bill. The original bill was funded by customs duties. When some Senators objected to that source of funding, Murray removed that provision and offered the bill without a funding mechanism to begin debate.

Today, Murray offered a revised funding source – extending for one year two existing customs fees that are going to expire.

In a Senate floor speech this morning, Murray warned that without dedicated funding, the security measures in the bill would never be fully implemented. Murray then spent the next six-hours on the Senate floor negotiating with other Senators to lock-in the funding. Her amendment passed this afternoon.

Now that the funding issue is resolved, the Senate will consider other amendments and is expected to vote on the overall bill later this week.