Tuesday, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration along the Texas southern border to respond to a growing border crisis.

The declaration authorizes the use of “all necessary state and local resources” to protect landowners.

On top of the declaration, Abbott directed various state agencies to also make concerted efforts in curtailing the crisis.

He directed the Texas Department of Public Safety to enforce all federal and state criminal laws including criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking.

He also directed the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to discontinue the state licensure of any child care facility under contract with the federal government that is currently or will shelter or detain unlawful immigrants.

Additionally, he directed the Texas Commission on Jail Standards and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement to provide guidance and request all necessary waivers to give border counties flexibility in establishing alternative detention facilities and add or expand capacity as needed.

“President Biden’s open-border policies have paved the way for dangerous gangs and cartels, human traffickers, and deadly drugs like fentanyl to pour into our communities,” said Abbott. “Meanwhile, landowners along the border are seeing their property damaged and vandalized on a daily basis while the Biden Administration does nothing to protect them. Texas continues to step up to confront the border crisis in the federal government’s absence, but more must be done.”

“By declaring a state of disaster in these counties, Texas will have more resources and strategies at our disposal to protect landowners and enforce all federal and state laws to combat criminal activities stemming from the border crisis.”

Jeramy Kitchen

Jeramy Kitchen serves as the Capitol Correspondent for Texas Scorecard as well as host of 'This Week in Texas', a show previewing the week ahead in Texas politics. After managing campaigns for conservative legislators across the state, serving as Chief of Staff for multiple conservative state legislators, and serving as Legislative Director for the largest public policy think tank in Texas, Jeramy moved outside of the Austin bubble to focus on bringing transparency to the legislative process.