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Highlights

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) border crossing cards (BCC), focusing on the: (1) changes in INS policies for processing BCC; and (2) number of BCC applications received and the percentage that are approved or denied. GAO noted that: (1) INS has drafted a proposed regulation to clarify and standardize procedures for issuing BCC; (2) in fiscal year (FY) 1994, the San Ysidro port received around 25,000 BCC applications, but denied about 50 percent of these applications; (3) the percentage of BCC applications denied decreased significantly because San Ysidro allowed applicants to use other forms of documentation proving residence and financial solvency; (4) INS has problems with the quality of data in its Central Index System and its Deportable Alien Control System because it does not have the proper procedures to direct its staff in updating its files; and (5) in August 1995, INS began requiring inspectors to check all BCC applicants against criminal history databases to prevent ineligible aliens from obtaining a BCC.

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