Texas Gov. Greg Abbott appeals FEMA’s denial of emergency disaster declaration for border situation

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Governor Greg Abbott is joined by 9 other GOP governors Wednesday in Mission, TX, to demand action from the Biden administration at the U.S.-Mexico border. (Nexstar photo/KVEO)

AUSTIN, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Officials from the office of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Thursday that Abbott sent a letter to President Joe Biden requesting an appeal of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) denial of an emergency disaster declaration for the situation at the Texas-Mexico border.

According to a news release from Abbott’s office, officials state that the request was initially submitted Sept. 20 and after the request was denied on Sept. 29, the office appealed the decision. The request claims that the federal government failed “to enforce immigration laws” and failed “to halt illegal crossings on federal property” which led to “substantial burdens on local and state resources.”

“Texas will stand with the federal government in responding to this border crisis, but should not have to stand alone or withstand the financial burden without federal assistance,” the letter reads. “This crisis has taken a serious toll on the Texas border communities, first responders, and the local non-profit sector. Local officials and Texas citizens are fatigued and running out of resources to respond to the ongoing border crisis. The citizens of Texas are resilient and will continue to respond, recover, and mitigate against this crisis, but in order to expedite this process, federal assistance is needed for these vulnerable populations.”

According to the release, Abbott’s office states that border-related decisions which have recently occurred include:

  • Signing laws that provide $3 billion in funding for Texas’ border security efforts;
  • Launching Operation Lone Star and deploying thousands of National Guard soldiers and Department of Public Safety troopers;
  • Creating a system to arrest and jail illegal migrants trespassing or committing other state crimes in Texas;
  • Signing a budget authorization to build the border wall in Texas;
  • Signing a law to make it easier to prosecute smugglers bringing people into Texas;
  • Signing nine laws cracking down on human trafficking in Texas;
  • Signing a law enhancing penalties for the manufacturing and distribution of fentanyl;
  • Issuing a disaster declaration for the border crisis;
  • Issuing an executive order preventing non-governmental entities from transporting illegal immigrants;
  • Taking legal action to enforce the Remain in Mexico and Title 42 policies in Texas.

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