(CNS) - A Texas Congressman, who is cosponsoring a bill, which eliminates the Immigration and Naturalization Service and replaces it with two autonomous bureaus separating enforcement and customer service, says that the agency is broken beyond repair.
The case of suspected serial-killer, Angel Resendez, who was deported by the INS three times, and apprehended nine, is the latest proof that the department is dysfunctional, says Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX).
"The current INS resembles a car stranded by the side of the road," said Smith.
"Money intended for necessary repairs was spent to make it look shiny and new. But new paint can't hide the fact it is a broken-down wreck."
Smith is co-sponsoring the un-named bill along with Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) and the main sponsor, Rep. Harold Rogers (R-KY).
INS statistics reveal that there are more than 5 million illegal immigrants in the US, with about 275,000 new ones entering and staying in the country each year. Critics say the 31,000 employee agency is trying to do too much by overseeing the Border Patrol, airport inspections, investigations, detentions, and deportations, as well as processing applications for visas, citizenship, asylum and other services.
"The INS is sort of a schizophrenic agency," said Center for Equal Opportunity spokesman Jorge Amselle.
"One side is doing law enforcement, while the other is doing service," Amselle told CNSNews.com.
A spokesman for Smith said that by splitting the INS into two bureaus, it would help with one of its major problems, i.e., boosting the number of Border Patrol agents.
"If the Navy and Marines can fill their quotas, then there is no reason the INS can't also" Alan Kay told CNSNew.com.
The INS says that it will only be able to increase its force by "300 to 400 agents" despite having congressional authorization to add 1,000 new officers this year.
A spokesperson for the INS told CNSNews.com that the service is interested in Smith's bill and agrees that the agency must divide the enforcement and service divisions, but each division should remain under one head within the INS.
"However, we believe, as does Rep. Rogers, that there needs to be fundamental change," said INS spokesperson Maria Cardona.