How to reopen the Can-Am border in a post-pandemic world?

Posted at 11:22 AM, May 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-22 11:23:03-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — What is the best way to reopen the Can-Am border in a post pandemic world? A group of agencies based in Western New York and Southern Ontario are joining forces and crafting some recommendations that will now be sent to Washington DC and Ottawa.

This group crafted the following recommendations in a letter to U.S. Senator for New York Kirsten Gillibrand.

  • Rather than a “one size fits all” approach,the United States and Canada should consider a cross-border regional approach to reopening the border.
  • The United States and Canada should utilize the Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) to reduce unnecessary regulatory differences related to medical supply and other critical industries.
  • Given that both the United States and Canada may incorporate “Buy American” or “Buy Canadian” provisions into the next rounds of stimulus funding, US legislators should incorporate a Canadian exemption into “Buy American” legislation and Canadian legislators should incorporate a US exemption into “Buy Canadian” legislation.
  • It is important for economic recovery in both the United States and Canada that the USMCA/CUSMAenter into force July 1, 2020.
  • The United States and Canada should invest in border technology to ensure that border crossers are healthy and promote economic recovery.
  • The United States and Canada should expand the marketing of NEXUS as one solution to “touchless” processing at the border.
  • Border operators, such as the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority (Peace Bridge) and Niagara Falls Bridge Commission (NFBC) should receive Federal and/or State-Provincial assistance in order to maintain operations.

Earlier this week it was announced that the U.S. - Canada border will remain closed to non-essential traffic until June 21.