Soon 60,000 Customs and Border Protection agents could be told to stay home. Furlough notices went out late last week to agents in Arizona and across the country.
Art Del Cueto is the president of the Tucson Custom and Border Protection Union. He represents 3,500 members.
"There is a lot of confusion right now with the agents not knowing what's going to happen," said Del Cueto.
Customs and Border Patrol agents are in Washington's crosshairs, the target of sequestration budget cuts. If politicians don't get their act together by April 21, Del Cueto said most agents will see their income cut by 40 percent.
Part of that comes from having to take up to 14 unpaid days off work. But the biggest hit to agents and border security comes from a cut to overtime.
"There are going to be gaps in the amount of agents that are actually patrolling," said Del Cueto.
Former DEA Special Agent in Charge Phil Jordan said if this should go into effect there's more to worry about than undocumented immigrants coming across the border to look for work.
"The politicians should focus on the radical Muslims as well as the increase in methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine. The cartels will wait until that time when the vigilance is not that high and therefore they can stockpile drugs on the other side and start moving them across," said Jordan.
For now there are still many what-ifs, and that uncertainty is already taking its toll.
"The people who still wear the uniform and the people in charge in Washington need to realize they cannot use our families and our agents as political pawns," said Del Cueto.
Copyright2013 CBS 5 (KPHO BroadcastingCorporation). All rights reserved.
Friday, May 17 2013 7:16 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:16:53 GMT
One person has died in a crash near Harrisonville, MO, Thursday evening. The crash happened on Missouri Highway 7 and Walker Road. It involved a car and a tractor-trailer. Harrisonville is in Cass County.More >
Savannah Nash celebrated her 16th birthday last week. She died Thursday when her car slammed into a semi while she was texting during her first time driving by herself.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 10:09 AM EDT2013-05-18 14:09:50 GMT
A train derailment was reported near the Bridgeport and Fairfield city lines Friday night. Few details have been released on the derailment, but the incident was reported around 6:30 p.m. in the area ofMore >
Dozens of passengers and employees were among those injured when two Metro-North trains collided near a station in Fairfield Friday night.More >
By H. Gilbert Welch, Special to CNN updated 8:12 AM EDT, Fri May 17, 2013Editor's note: H. Gilbert Welch is a professor of medicine at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical PracticeMore >
I first saw the headline early Tuesday on Real Clear Politics, a political news site where I generally start my morning. It's not where I expect to see a story on breast cancer.
Wednesday, May 15 2013 2:57 PM EDT2013-05-15 18:57:11 GMT
The old saying goes, "If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen." Perhaps, this applies to Kitchen Nightmares, as well. An Arizona bakery was featured on Friday's episode of the Gordon RamseyMore >
The old saying goes, "If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen." Perhaps, this applies to Kitchen Nightmares, as well.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 7:58 PM EDT2013-05-18 23:58:37 GMT
Happy Saturday, Rain is on its way – as expected – but it will not hamper the entire weekend. Early this morning, there will be low clouds, fog and drizzle in many parts of Connecticut. This will haveMore >
Thursday, May 16 2013 3:45 PM EDT2013-05-16 19:45:11 GMT
Police arrested a Toronto woman, who was trying to get into the charity polo match in Greenwich where Prince Harry was playing.According to police, Wen Qi, 36, was trying to enter the Conyers Farms PoloMore >
Police arrested a Toronto woman, who was trying to get into the charity polo match in Greenwich where Prince Harry was playing.More >
South Korea says North Korea has fired three short-range guided missiles into its eastern waters. Pyongyang routinely test-launches such missiles.More >
North Korea fired three short-range guided missiles into its eastern waters on Saturday, a South Korean official said. It routinely tests such missiles, but the latest launches came during a period of tentative diplomacy...More >
Friday, May 17 2013 5:19 PM EDT2013-05-17 21:19:20 GMT
CSP arrive in Trumbull after a body was found Friday morning
A body was discovered along a road on the Bridgeport and Trumbull town lines Friday morning, according to police.No other information was released.Refresh this page and watch Eyewitness News for updatesMore >
State police said they are investigating the discovery of human remains in a wooded area near the Bridgeport/Trumbull town lines Friday morning.More >