Mexican customs to be stationed in Kansas City - New 'inland port' in heartland part of international plan that bypasses unions

By Staff writers,, June 20, 2006

A Mexican customs office is being built in the U.S. heartland as part of a newly designed "inland port" facility that links with a Mexican seaport, an official in Kansas City confirms.

Tasha Hammes of the Kansas City Area Development Council wrote to author and WND columnist Jerome Corsi to correct some details of a column on the subject, but she affirmed that a key purpose of the Kansas City Inland Port, or SmartPort, will be to facilitate the movement of containers from the Far East through the Mexican port at Lazaro Cardenas rather than the West Coast ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Corsi also had written that Kansas City Southern had acquired Mexican railroads to create a "NAFTA Railroad" that would link Lazaro Cardenas to the U.S. for container transport....

Hammes confirmed Kansas City plans to house a Mexican customs facility in the city's port, but she pointed out it will handle outbound U.S. freight exclusively, not inbound.

Hammes clarified that Kansas City, Mo., is leasing the site to Kansas City SmartPort. It will not be leased to any Mexican government agency or be sovereign territory of Mexico.

"It will employ both U.S. and Mexican Customs officials just like the current facilities in place at our nation's borders," she said. "It's a facility that U.S. companies will use to expedite the process of shipping their goods to customers in Mexico."

A brochure on the Kansas City SmartPort website documents the connection between Lazaro Cardenas and Kansas City's decision to become America's number one "inland port," saying:

"Kansas City offers the opportunity for sealed cargo containers to travel to Mexican port cities with virtually no border delays. It will streamline shipments from Asia and cut the time and labor costs associated with shipping through the congested ports on the West Coast."

Corsi contends a main purpose of opening Lazaro Cardenas to receive a greater volume of containers from the Far East and linking it with the planned NAFTA Super-Corridor and Kansas City SmartPort is to reduce labor costs.

Longshoremen would not be employed at the port of Lazaro Cardenas, and, in Mexico, the employees of Kansas City Southern would not be United Transportation Union workers.

To the extent that Mexican trucks become involved in the operation, it would mean Teamster Union drivers would not be employed in the operation....

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