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Texas farmers and ranchers are asking the Biden Administration to pay for the damages caused to their properties as a side effect of human smuggling and the border crisis. Smugglers and migrants frequently damage fences, irrigation systems, and even steal equipment as they move through South Texas.
“The folks along the border will tell you that they have always dealt with illegals but this is different,” Texas Farm Bureau President Russell Boening told Breitbart Texas in an interview earlier this month. “The sheer magnitude and number of people moving through is overwhelming. The brashness and expectations of the people is different than years ago.”
In June, the American Farm Bureau Federation, all 50 state farm bureaus, and the Puerto Rico Farm Bureau sent a letter to Biden Administration officials calling on the federal government to step up and help, the New York Post reported on Tuesday. The White House hosted a meeting with bureau officials regarding the damages. Bureau leaders asked for financial assistance.
In June, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration in multiple counties impacted by the exponentially increasing number of migrant crossings. The governor initiated a self-reporting system for Texas landowners to report damages caused by migrants and human smugglers, Breitbart Texas’ Randy Clark reported.
“I strongly encourage Texas landowners along the border to report any personal property damages they incur due to unlawful immigration, by completing the Self Reporting Damage Survey, our state will be equipped with the necessary data to continue addressing the ongoing crisis at our southern border and provide the support our landowners and communities need to stay safe and secure,” the Texas governor said in a written statement.
Several Texas farmers and ranchers prepared video appeals where they discuss not only the damages to their properties, but the dangers they face in everyday life in the areas impacted by the border crisis, Breitbart Texas reported.
Boening explained how different the current crisis is compared to previous spikes.
“The brashness and expectations of the people is different than years ago,” the Farm Bureau president concluded. “We often hear about the unaccompanied minors and family units that actually give themselves up to authorities, but there are also groups of young male adults moving through carrying backpacks and accompanied by a coyote with an automatic weapon. Do we really think these folks are looking for asylum or work?”