ACE program to be mandatory for Texas, California and New Mexico

| Tuesday, January 23, 2007

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has added Texas, California and New Mexico to a growing list of border states where electronic cargo manifests are to be mandatory for all trucks crossing the border.

The Automated Commercial Environment, known as ACE, requires all truckers and trucking companies, including owner-operators, to send cargo manifests to border officials electronically prior to crossing into the U.S., regardless of origin or destination.

The Department of Homeland Security is in the process of phasing in the mandatory program for all 99 land border crossings.

The goal of the program, according to the customs Web site, is to allow customs agents to pre-screen cargo to enhance and speed up secure border trade.

Texas, California and New Mexico crossing points will implement mandatory ACE requirements by April 12.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection published the official 90-day notice Jan. 19 in the Federal Register for those three states.

ACE will be mandatory at Arizona and Washington crossings and at most North Dakota crossings on Jan. 25, according to a prior notice in the Federal Register.

Notices will be published soon for more states, the customs agency reported.

Truckers and companies can hire an approved third-party vendor to set up their ACE accounts and send the electronic manifests on their behalf.

For more information on how to set up an ACE account, visit http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/toolbox/about/modernization/ace_app_info/.

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