SWANTON, Vermont — U.S. Customs and Border Protection hopes to build eight new video surveillance towers along the U.S.-Canadian border in Vermont and New York.
The federal agency has filed a draft environmental impact statement for the proposed phase 1 Remote Video Surveillance System for the U.S. Border Patrol’s Swanton Sector, which includes Vermont, New Hampshire and a portion of upstate New York.
The statement found the project would have no significant impact. A 30-day public comment period began Tuesday after which a final environmental impact statement will be issued.
There is no indication when CBP would like to begin construction.
The systems would enable U.S. Border Patrol’s agents to keep watch over remote areas without committing numerous agents in vehicles to perform the same functions.
“The increasing frequency and nature of illegal cross-border activities, as well as the geographic area over which these activities occur, create a need for a technology-based surveillance capability that can effectively collect, process, and distribute information,” said the assessment.
The proposal includes locations in Champlain, New York, and the Vermont communities of Highgate Center, Franklin, Richford, Derby Line and North Troy.
CBP would build permanent and moveable towers and use existing cell towers to help maintain surveillance over large areas.