After many failed attempts, thousands of dollars in federal funds will be allocated to border communities following the humanitarian crisis, but one Texas Congressman says the state isn’t doing as much as they can.
In a press conference at the McAllen chambers, Representative Henry Cuellar announced the designation of $21.5 million from homeland security for this fiscal year. Funds that come after he and Senator John Cornyn amended the language in the appropriations bill to allow the federal emergency management agency to refund cities, counties, churches and non-profits across the southwest border. The city of McAllen along with Sacred Heart Church, Hidalgo County, the Red Cross and other organizations incurred in a total of about $600,000. Those asking for a refund will have to apply through FEMA. But Cuellar argues that more funding could go to help the border, if Texas decides to.
According to FEMA, there are still $24 million unused dollars in the state homeland security fund. What’s more is in the past two fiscal years, only a fraction of federal monies for security, went to the border. Something the congressmen have vowed to fight to make sure the state pays the valley its due part.
Cuellar has made it clear that the reimbursement is neither for man power nor security. Meaning it will not reimburse Texas for the DPS surge or the National Guard. He hopes to get funding for immigration judges and foreign aid to Central America instead.