Hurd Continues Fight For TX-23 Communities Strained by Border Crisis

Yesterday I urged my colleagues to support $30 million in federal funding to reimburse local communities strained by the humanitarian crisis on our Southern border.

I introduced a secondary amendment to the House Appropriations Committee’s Homeland Security funding bill that would add $30 million to the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Federal Assistance funds to be used for emergency food and shelter grants to local governments and NGOs.

My secondary amendment was passed, but Democrats stopped the final amendment from being included in the bill – again delaying critical assistance for Texas border communities.  This marks the second time Democrats on the committee defeated my efforts for emergency funds for the crisis at the border. I pointed out during debate that I represent more of the southern border than any other member of Congress and that the delay was allowing my communities to continue to suffer.

You can watch my remarks at yesterday’s hearing, here. Full remarks as prepared below.

“I represent more of the U.S.-Mexico Border than any other member of Congress. I have spent years in my home state’s vibrant border communities, building relationships with Texans living in border towns. I can tell you with certainty that what is happening on our border is an unprecedented crisis that is getting worse every day and my communities in South and West Texas are being forced to shoulder the costs of dealing with it.

“That’s why today, I’m offering an amendment that will add $30 million dollars in FEMA Federal Assistance funds for emergency food and shelter grants to NGOs and local governments.

I consistently hear that folks I represent are concerned about the influx of migrants and subsequent releases by the Customs and Border Protection. My constituents, and the American public at large, are rightfully concerned about this issue, and the ramifications for public safety and the drain on taxpayer resources.

“Due to a lack of human resources, DHS has been forced to release thousands of individuals into small communities along our southern border. Local communities and NGO’s should not have to bear the brunt of flawed policies and inaction.

“They need to be given more resources for the security of our citizens who are dealing with an issue that should be shouldered by federal agencies. An issue that should have been solved by Congress. An issue that we can help solve today.

“The crisis on our Southern border has divided the country and put significant attention on the agencies working on the ground every day to deal with this situation. Let’s focus on the policies and decisions made by the leaders of these agencies and avoid vilifying those who are working hard every day to do their jobs on the ground.

“We can fix this problem once and for all, but it will take a commitment from all of us to come together as a country and pursue smart policies that will make a difference on the ground, support our values and laws and benefit the American people.”


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