As the border crisis intensifies, Texans are turning attention to an illegal alien housing development called Colony Ridge, which is situated just north of Houston in Liberty County.
By a vote of 61-0, the Texas GOP passed a resolution calling for action on Colony Ridge:
[T]he Republican Party of Texas asks for legislation to be added to the upcoming special session call, or to a subsequent special session, to prevent further settlement of illegal aliens in Colony Ridge and any other areas of Texas.
According to the resolution, the GOP is also asking Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to “initiate a full investigation into the development activities of Colony Ridge Land, LLC, and its possible connections to elected officials in the region.”
Colony Ridge Communities is the land development company responsible for providing loans for the construction of one of the largest illegal alien settlements in America. Notably, it is funded by one of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s major donors.
Terrenos Houston, the marketing program for Colony Ridge, advertises to illegal aliens by indicating they do not require traditional bank loans, nor do they need Social Security numbers or a proven job history to apply. Instead, the company operates through owner-financed lots for illegal aliens who don’t qualify for certain loans.
The company is particularly active on international media platforms and produces marketing videos in Spanish, promoting incentives like discounts and video tours of the area’s new schools.
The development has long been associated with the Gulf and Sinaloa cartels. In 2013, 300 acres of Liberty County lands were used to host the “largest and most sophisticated marijuana-growing operation” in U.S. history. The area broke another record in July 2021, when the Drug Enforcement Administration raided a multimillion-dollar methamphetamine manufacturing lab in Colony Ridge.
According to an investigation by the Daily Wire, there is limited law enforcement presence in the area. Additionally, the Gulf and Sinaloa cartels have reportedly purchased land in the development to set up safe houses.
Colony Ridge is also straining local resources as illegal alien children flood the Cleveland Independent School District.
The GOP resolution noted that enrollment in Cleveland ISD schools “increase[d] from 6,584 students to 12,400 over the course of four years.” CISD also “had to build several new schools and is reported to be hiring H-1B visa holders due to the number of foreign language teachers needed to keep pace with enrollment.”
Concerns have also been raised over the state of properties in Colony Ridge.
Some have compared the development to a colonia, which the Texas Attorney General defines as “substandard housing developments, often found along the Texas-Mexico border; where residents lack basic services such as drinking water, sewage treatment, and paved roads.”
The developers refuted this claim.
Border Crisis Intensifies
As the GOP draws attention to Colony Ridge, U.S. Customs and Border Protection released the latest numbers of illegal border crossings from August. CBP’s total encounters along the Southwest border in August reached 232,972.
With 2.2 million encounters thus far this federal fiscal year—and one month left—it remains to be seen whether FY 2023 will break FY 2022’s record of 2.3 million.
“Colony Ridge is now international news,” Chris Russo, President of Texans for Strong Borders, told Texas Scorecard.“The nation’s largest illegal alien settlement can no longer hide in the shadows, and it is encouraging to see the Republican Party of Texas pass a resolution calling for exactly what we have been urging—legislation to make sure that other developers cannot replicate what has happened in Colony Ridge and a full, thorough investigation into the development by Attorney General Paxton now that he is back in his elected office.”