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Northern Minnesota border crossings set to change hours of operation

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LANCASTER, Minn.—Drivers coming home from Canada may have to take a major detour, as the feds want to make changes to local ports of entry.

The Lancaster Crossing in Northern Minnesota is currently open until 10 p.m. — but Customs and Border Protection is considering closing earlier at 4 p.m. instead.

It’s not just at the Lancaster Crossing—Roseau is also set to reduce available crossing time by 4 hours each day.

The changes are set to start in early January, and officials say this is to redirect their staff to ports with higher traffic.

Customs and Border Protection is hosting meetings in early November to get feedback from nearby communities.

  • The Roseau town hall meeting will take place at 7 p.m., Nov. 2, at the Civic Center, located at 121 Center Street East, Roseau, MN.
  • The Lancaster town hall meeting will take place at 7 p.m., Nov. 6, at the Lancaster Community Center located at 118 Central Avenue South, Lancaster, MN.

Just down the road in Lancaster, Minnesota locals say they don't want a reduction in hours—and they plan to fight the change.

"We've talked to like Amy Klobuchar, Al Franken, Colin Petersen and they know about it so just I think it'll probably take that level to get it changed,” said business owner Charlie Bernstrom.

Local business owners are worried about how the proposed changes could impact effect their bottom line. 

You can read the full statement from U.S. Customs and Border Protection and see the dates and times of the meetings below:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection will adjust the hours of operation at the Lancaster and Roseau, Minnesota, ports of entry, beginning Jan. 7, 2018.  Annually we review and assess workload volumes, staffing, and infrastructure costs within the Area Port of Pembina.  The ports of Lancaster and Roseau were identified for modification of operational hours to realign resources to workload.  This adjustment will allow us to properly align staffing with workload, maintain CBP’s inspectional and enforcement missions, and redirect resources to ports with greater commercial and passenger volumes.  Northbound travelers and cargo exports will not be affected by this change.

The current hours of operation for the Port of Lancaster are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., which coincide with the hours of operation at the adjacent Canadian Port of Tolstoi, Manitoba.  Effective Jan. 7, the new hours of operation at Lancaster will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Travelers wishing to cross into the United States between the hours of 4 p.m. and 8 a.m. may cross at Pembina, North Dakota, a 24-hour POE approximately 30 miles west of Lancaster.

The current hours of operation for the Port of Roseau are 8 a.m. to midnight, which coincide with the hours of operation at the adjacent Canadian Port of South Junction, Manitoba. Beginning Jan. 7, the new hours of operation at Roseau will be 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Travelers wishing to cross into the United States between the hours of 8 p.m. and 8 a.m. may cross at Warroad, Minnesota, a 24-hour POE approximately 21 miles east of Roseau.

Additionally, we will be holding town hall meetings in Roseau and Lancaster to discuss the adjustment of hours and obtain feedback from the community members and stakeholders.

The Roseau town hall meeting will take place at 7 p.m., Nov. 2, at the Civic Center, located at 121 Center Street East, Roseau, MN.

The Lancaster town hall meeting will take place at 7 p.m., Nov. 6, at the Lancaster Community Center located at 118 Central Avenue South, Lancaster, MN.

Christopher Misson

Assistant Area Port Director-Tactical Operations

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Office of Field Operations (Seattle-FO)

Pembina Port of Entry

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