Border ID rules to change tomorrow

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(Host) Anyone crossing the U.S. border from Canada at this time tomorrow will be asked to present a passport.

As VPR’s Ross Sneyd reports, state officials continue to worry how the new federal policy will affect Vermont’s economy.

(Sneyd) Commerce has passed back and forth across the Vermont-Quebec border for centuries without too many restrictions.

Critics of a new federal policy say that will change dramatically when everyone is asked for better proof of their identity and their citizenship.

Vermont Commerce Secretary Kevin Dorn says Canadians will see the new requirement as a hassle and they won’t head south to shop or ski.

(Dorn) “They see this as an impediment will people still come across the border? Sure. Will fewer of them come over because of this? It’s probably likely. Of course, this will then have an impact not only on the revenues that our companies are bringing in, but on the revenues of the state.”

(Sneyd) Starting tomorrow, American Customs agents will ask people at the border for a passport.

Travelers without a passport – or its equivalent – will have to present a driver’s license and a birth certificate.

Dorn says travelers will be put off by the new ID requirements. And they won’t like that it probably will take longer to get through lines at the border. So he believes many just won’t make the effort.

For VPR News, I’m Ross Sneyd.

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