POSTED: Thursday, October 7, 2010 - 2:09pm
UPDATED: Saturday, January 29, 2011 - 2:38pm
SANTA TERESA- Alberto Trillo ships cars to Mexico. He used to ship a lot. But new limits from Customs and Border Protection have cut his business by 75 percent.
"Since they began these rules, the economy has gotten worse. We've lost work and we want them to recognize that," Alberto told us.
CBP tightened exports earlier this year. One person gets one export per day with no exceptions. Originally, restrictions were much looser.
"We got into a situation, though, where it was kind of a first come first serve basis and people were lining up, they were parking overnight, there were fights breaking out, line jumping, things like that," says CBP Spokesman Roger Maier.
One car per day isn't enough to keep the Trillo's business afloat. Michelle is Alberto's daughter and doubles as his secretary.
"If we're not having income, we cannot pay the rent, the maintenance of the car carriers, and our employees. So we had to let go some of our employees," Michelle says.
She took us to see her Dad's shop. It's a parking lot emptier than it used to be.
Each one of Alberto's haulers holds ten cars a piece. He used to take four full ones into Mexico per week. Since the new restrictions have been put into place, that number's been reduced to one.
"We want to be able to work, to earn an honest living," Michelle says.
They might get to do just that. Troubleshooters told CBP about the Trillo's problem.
Maier invited the Trillo's to call him, which they plan to do.
Troubleshooters will follow up to see if Alberto's shipping problem is solved.