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Two ports of entry in Montana getting expanded hours

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(The Center Square) – Two ports of entry in Montana will see a temporary expansion of operating hours, U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced.

Beginning on July 16, the Piegan POE will operate seven days a week from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m., according to CBP, while the Raymond POE will operate seven days a week from 6 a.m. until midnight beginning on July 30. CBP said in a news release the temporary hours expansion will be for 120 days.

“For several years, CBP has documented a reduction in privately-owned vehicle and pedestrian traffic at some POEs along its northern border with some ports having permanently reduced operational hours prior to 2019,” the agency said. “As part of CBP’s obligation to use its resources responsibly and most efficiently, continual evaluations of workload, staffing, operating costs, and traffic volumes were performed to align operating hours that reflect traffic patterns and place employees where they can be most useful.”

All ports in Montana have seen 203,000 conveyances by passenger vehicle so far since the fiscal year 2023, data shows, and 248,000 in fiscal 2022.

“Currently, traffic volumes in Montana remain approximately 22% below their 2019 levels,” CBP said. “At the conclusion of the temporary expansion of hours, CBP will conduct an analysis on traffic flow including an hourly breakdown, overall volume, and types of conveyances that crossed the border.”

The agency added it’s “working closely with its partners to discuss the operational details surrounding changes to port hours and is in close coordination with local governmental officials and congressional stakeholders.”

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