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RW_LEO

Customs and Border Protection Air Interdiction Agent

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Initially, you will be assigned to a UAS location. All of our UAS locations have manned aircraft and all AIA's are required to maintain flight proficiency; not just currency. I have no idea what "proficiency" equates to in flight hours. I am not a UAS pilot and would probably not accept assignment to a UAS station as a manned aircraft pilot.

If interested, send me a message and I will get you in touch with someone at the branch. I do not want to give you bad information.

Edited by RW_LEO

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8 minutes ago, airsigncutter said:

Three pilots were just Directed out of Montana. It's not an option for new employees.

Do you know where they were directed to go?

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15 hours ago, airsigncutter said:

All of the directed relocations were to McAllen, Laredo, or Puerto Rico. It is my understanding that all three pilots in Montana resigned instead of accepting the relocation.

Shocking.  Again, the vast majority of prior military pilots who have other decent options (airlines, medflights, etc) aren't begging to have these federal flying jobs.  

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On 10/6/2017 at 4:46 PM, soupafly06 said:

With CBP allowing up to 1250 hours of MQ time to count toward flying your totals, will pilots with mostly MQ time be made to fly MQ only or will manned fixed wing be an option?

Our unmanned locations do have manned aircraft; 206 and maybe an AS350. As a MQ pilot with 1250 hours, I assume the expectation is you fly UAS for CBP for a few years. Some commands at the UAS locations have been rotating their pilots in manned aircraft to ensure they maintain proficiency in the aircraft.  Additionally, I heard some UAS locations are beginning to send their pilots to busier SW Border locations to get RW or FW flight time. This is a 3-5 day TDY and is dependent on operational requirements.

I am at a manned location and do not want to speculate further about the climate, flight hours, etc for our unmanned locations. If you are interested, send me a message and I will gladly get you in touch with an agent at one of these locations. Once you have the facts, you can make an education decision for you and the family (If applicable). 

Edited by RW_LEO

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I am a veteran and reservist. Currently 38 years old, but I will not be able to apply for a year or two.  Are there any restrictions or gotchas on the age limits over 40?

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No, if you are a veteran you can apply at any age. One consideration, you have to complete 20-years of law enforcement (LE) service to receive a 34% LE Federal Retirement. If you do not complete 20-years, you are entitled to 1% per year plus any active duty years you buyback into FERS. Ex: 10-years CBP plus 10 years of active duty buyback equals 20% of your high three. This retirement is in addition to any military retirement you receive. Since you mentioned you are a reservist, I am making the assumption you will not have an active duty retirement? If you do, the math changes.  

I recommend everyone apply one year from your availability date. Unfortunately, many applicants do not make it past the polygraph or flight check. Apply early, determine your eligibility, and decide if CBP is the best career for you and if applicable, your family. 

Let me know what other questions you have. 

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No, if you are a veteran you can apply at any age. One consideration, you have to complete 20-years of law enforcement (LE) service to receive a 34% LE Federal Retirement. If you do not complete 20-years, you are entitled to 1% per year plus any active duty years you buyback into FERS. Ex: 10-years CBP plus 10 years of active duty buyback equals 20% of your high three. This retirement is in addition to any military retirement you receive. Since you mentioned you are a reservist, I am making the assumption you will not have an active duty retirement? If you do, the math changes.  
I recommend everyone apply one year from your availability date. Unfortunately, many applicants do not make it past the polygraph or flight check. Apply early, determine your eligibility, and decide if CBP is the best career for you and if applicable, your family. 
Let me know what other questions you have. 


Is the polygraph unlimited in scope? How hard can that or a checkride be? Is the issue the quality of applicants or is the screening really that stringent?

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DHS created a webpage to answer questions about the polygraph: https://www.cbp.gov/careers/car/poly

Our current polygraph has received a lot of criticism and is currently under review: http://thehill.com/homenews/sunday-talk-shows/329003-dhs-chief-eyes-changes-to-polygraph-system

The checkride is a commercial FAA checkride using PTS standards, a checkride most have successfully completed multiple times. It is conducted in a AS350 or EC120 for helicopter pilots and a C206 for fixed-wing pilots. Most applicants have never flown either aircraft, that is taken into consideration. We use the same instructors for all applicant checkrides and the program is heavily standardized. My opinion, the majority of applicants who have problems are military pilots who have always flown in a crewed aircraft. Unfamiliar aircraft, stress of a checkride, and unfamiliar with single pilot resource management, many applicant failures (the few I know of) result from problems with instrument maneuvers; descend below MDA's or problems with the hold. 

Edited by RW_LEO

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On 9/23/2017 at 11:28 PM, Metalswarm said:

Hello all! I'd like to know what the typical day of rotary wing flight is like? Do you essentially have a patrol route? Flight modes? I'd assume mostly VFR. Thanks for any insight!

AIA's are scheduled 5-days a week for a total of 8-hours each day. Depending on your branches operational requirements, and sometimes personal preference, you might work 0600-1400, 0800-1600, or 1600-2400. Very few locations work Mid-0800, might be a few though? 

Your other questions are very dependent on your location and their mission. Many of our Southwest locations conduct patrols supporting Border Patrol, our urban locations (Chicago, Long Island, Houston) will support other federal partners with investigative support. Air and Marine supports many federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. DEA, ATF, State Police/Trooper, etc. My location supports national special security events; Super Bowl, United Nations, etc. Maritime locations support drug enforcement from the Caribbean, South America, etc. We have King Air 350's with special maritime radar and other manned and unmanned fixed wing aircraft designed for the interdiction mission. There is a lot of mission diversity in the agency and a lot of opportunity for agents to experience different modes of flight and mission sets throughout their career. 

Our current policy is that everyone must start in the Southwest (SW) border. Operationally, the SW is our main effort and by default gets personnel, aircraft, and additional operational support. 

Please post any additional questions you have. If interested, send me an email at rw_leo@outlook.com and I can submit your application. Do not use USAJOB's, it is very slow and the post-application service is not great. Below is a pic from this years support bowl. 

 

6332e477-b29d-433d-8348-eb86fa411e33.jpg

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On ‎2‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 6:57 PM, RW_LEO said:

AIA's are scheduled 5-days a week for a total of 8-hours each day. Depending on your branches operational requirements, and sometimes personal preference, you might work 0600-1400, 0800-1600, or 1600-2400. Very few locations work Mid-0800, might be a few though? 

Tucson has a grave shift. San Diego may also, at least they used to.  A number of branches used to run graves, now even if they wanted to, they don't have the manpower to.

Edited by MD

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I just wanted to add my 2 cents on the AIA positions. 

Just hit my 5 year mark. I started out at one of the SW border location, and was able to transfer to a much better location after 4.5 years.

I know most of this talk has been about flying; however, there is the an LE aspect to this job as well. The LE aspect of this jobs is what I enjoy the most. I work on the investigations side. Some of the work I have been able to do: been on the ground with our investigative partners serving search and arrest warrants, installed covert camera systems to further investigations, seized aircraft that have been involved in smuggling or other violations, cyber investigations and lots of training opportunities. 

I will tell you that i have had 2 very good supervisors that look out for their guys and has tried their best to shield us from a lot of the BS. The investigations side tends to be a small group of guys, so we have been pretty tight knit.

When I first started this job, I wasn’t sure I would make it to year 2, I was ready to move on. However, I found a niche I that I enjoyed and no one else wanted to do... things turned around. 

 

 

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On ‎3‎/‎18‎/‎2018 at 11:05 PM, CD512 said:

I just wanted to add my 2 cents on the AIA positions. 

Just hit my 5 year mark. I started out at one of the SW border location, and was able to transfer to a much better location after 4.5 years.

I know most of this talk has been about flying; however, there is the an LE aspect to this job as well. The LE aspect of this jobs is what I enjoy the most. I work on the investigations side. Some of the work I have been able to do: been on the ground with our investigative partners serving search and arrest warrants, installed covert camera systems to further investigations, seized aircraft that have been involved in smuggling or other violations, cyber investigations and lots of training opportunities. 

I will tell you that i have had 2 very good supervisors that look out for their guys and has tried their best to shield us from a lot of the BS. The investigations side tends to be a small group of guys, so we have been pretty tight knit.

When I first started this job, I wasn’t sure I would make it to year 2, I was ready to move on. However, I found a niche I that I enjoyed and no one else wanted to do... things turned around. 

 

 

Sound like you'd make a good Sup.......or acting Sup, since everyone from the top down in the agency seems to be acting positions and not designated to the actual jobs in this agency.

Edited by MD

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Besides the SW border and PR, I notice St. Thomas V.I. is also listed on the announcement (Caribbean branch). Is that also a hard to fill locale or how difficult is that for newbies to get? I understand about the drastic tax situation PR poses and the like, but the wife has some job prospects there (both PR & St. Thomas), and wouldn't be bad for a few years I don't think.

I'm thinking about throwing my name into the hat. I'm a current DoD federal civilian (8 yrs) so I already understand a lot of the gov't BS a lot of people reference on forums (mandatory trainings, politics, and the like), so that wouldn't be a blindside for me, as I'm used to it by now 😳 Just trying to weigh some options at this time.

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On 3/27/2018 at 5:01 PM, jmd4j said:

Besides the SW border and PR, I notice St. Thomas V.I. is also listed on the announcement (Caribbean branch). Is that also a hard to fill locale or how difficult is that for newbies to get? I understand about the drastic tax situation PR poses and the like, but the wife has some job prospects there (both PR & St. Thomas), and wouldn't be bad for a few years I don't think.

I'm thinking about throwing my name into the hat. I'm a current DoD federal civilian (8 yrs) so I already understand a lot of the gov't BS a lot of people reference on forums (mandatory trainings, politics, and the like), so that wouldn't be a blindside for me, as I'm used to it by now 😳 Just trying to weigh some options at this time.

St Thomas V.I. is a marine location, not air. The only air location in the Caribbean is Aguadilla, PR. One advantage to your situation is the retirement. I assume you are in the Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS)? If yes, all your years transfer at no additional cost. 

If you have active duty military time, you can buy back each year at 1% into FERS. I can provide you references for the benefit and cost of buying back your active duty years. If interested in applying, please contact me at rw_leo@outlook.com. Do not go through USAJOBs, I will apply for you. It is much easier and I am able to get feedback from the hiring center. Good luck.  

Edited by RW_LEO

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Can you buy back just your academy time and maintain your active duty retirement since you aren't receiving retirement pay for your academy time?

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What is the average time it takes to get a position at the more desirable locations such as San Diego, Jacksonville, or Miami?  

Also, for the military folks, if you have a TS/SCI and move to a billet only requiring Secret (so you remain TS/SCI eligible but are Secret), do you remain eligibility’s now for a polygraph waiver?

I’m debating between the service aspect and the airline pay for my family’s quality of life.

Thanks!

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