Information on Immigration Enforcement and Supervisory Promotions in the Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection

GAO-06-751R Published: Jun 13, 2006. Publicly Released: Jun 13, 2006.
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After the creation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in March 2003, two legacy enforcement agencies--the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the U.S. Customs Service (USCS)--were among the 22 federal agencies brought together within DHS. This transformation in turn merged the legacy INS and USCS investigators into the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Investigations (OI), and legacy INS and USCS inspectors, among others, into Customs and Border Protection (CBP). It has been nearly 3 years since the merger and efforts to integrate thousands of federal employees within ICE and CBP continue. Congress raised questions about ongoing human capital challenges brought about by the integration of legacy enforcement employees within ICE and CBP. In prior work, we have reported on the management and human capital challenges DHS faces as it merges the workforces of legacy agencies, including the need to clarify the roles and responsibilities of the new agencies, the difficulty of legacy staff operating from separate locations, and how it decides to allocate investigative resources. This report addresses the following objectives: (1) How many investigative work years were dedicated to immigration enforcement activities for fiscal years 1999 through 2005? (2) What factors does ICE use as the basis for allocating its investigative resources? (3) What assessments do ICE and CBP use as a basis for making decisions on supervisory promotions? (4) Have ICE and CBP supervisory promotions been distributed between legacy INS and USCS staff in proportion to the supervisory staff each legacy agency brought to ICE and CBP?

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