CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — The U.S. representatives from Northern New England are urging the Department of Homeland Security to safely reopen the U.S.-Canadian border, noting that Canadian tourists are vital contributors to the region’s economy.

The Democrats, led by Annie Kuster of New Hampshire, wrote to Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Thursday. They said Canadian tourists spend $19 billion on average in the United States, including $500 million across northern New England. They said allowing vaccinated tourists to travel between the two countries will spur job creation on either side of the border and keep both economies on the path to recovery.

RELATED BORDER NEWS:

the U.S.-Canada border will remain closed to non-essential travel until at least June 21st.

Only trade and essential travel will be allowed, said authorities. U.S. and Canadian officials have been discussing the next move in reopening the border, according to Bloomberg.

The border has been closed to non-essential travel for over a year due to the pandemic. It was March 2020 when the U.S.-Canada closed the border. The restrictions have been renewed each month.

We’ll keep you updated as the talks continue to open the border. In the past, monthly updates have been issued by the Canadian government and United States government.

Read the full article about the border restrictions.

LOCAL RELATED BORDER NEWS: 

Beginning July 1st, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will temporarily close the Limestone Port of Entry for reconstruction and upgrades.

The Limestone crossing is expected to reopen on or before March 1, 2022.

The two nearest border crossings are in Hamlin and Fort Fairfield.

Travel into New Brunswick is permitted only for work, medical reasons and child custody or compassionate reasons if approved by the province’s Public Health department.

READ MORE: LOCAL RELATED BORDER NEWS: 

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is closing the Monticello-Bloomfield border crossing for the next five months due to inactivity.

The Port of Entry on the Fletcher Road, is typically staffed by two officers from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday.

In the past year, only 74 vehicles crossed at that checkpoint–or about one every four days. Prior to the pandemic, it was averaging about five vehicles per day.

Customs and Border Protection operates two other border crossings within 10 - 15 miles of Monticello, one in Bridgewater and another in Houlton.

The Monticello crossing will resume operations October 1.

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