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Point Roberts border decision in hands of federal government: B.C. premier

Last Updated Aug 12, 2020 at 3:33 pm PDT

FILE - Point Roberts is seen here from the NEWS 1130 Air Patrol in the summer of 2019. (Riley Phillips, NEWS 1130 Photo)

Point Roberts residents would like a special exemption to cross into Canada

Premier has talked to Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland about Point Roberts, but no decision's been made yet

The borders are not the responsibility of B.C.: premier

VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — B.C. Premier John Horgan trusts the federal government to do what’s best when it comes to Washington state lawmakers seeking special border crossing privileges for people heading to and from Point Roberts.

Those residents would like a special exemption to cross into Canada, to stock up on supplies and visit family, then return back through the Peace Arch border crossing into Washington state.

“How would we monitor that?” Horgan said Wednesday while announcing the hiring of 500 contact tracers in B.C.


“We had a challenge with what was characterized as the Alaska loophole and we worked with the federal government to ensure that our neighbours could transit through B.C. from the United States to Alaska, if that was their final destination. But we wanted to make sure they did that with haste, and they didn’t linger through our public parks through our communities.”

Horgan added he’s talked about Point Roberts — which has an economy heavily-dependent on B.C. — with Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, but no decision’s been made yet.

“With respect to point Roberts, this is a very sticky issue and one that I’ve discussed with the federal government, and I’ll leave it in their hands to manage,” he said

“The borders are not our responsibility, although British Columbians don’t like to hear people pointing in different directions when it comes to jurisdiction. We’re all in this together.”

The Canadian-U.S. border is closed to non-essential travel until at least Aug. 21 due to COVID-19.