EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Mayor Oscar Leeser confirmed to KTSM 9 News on Wednesday night that they have now received the $2 million dollars from the federal government for upfront cost for the migrant crises.
The City is submitting for reimbursement for cost from July until the end of September which is over $6 million.
“Right now the current estimated balance for reimbursement is a little bit over $6 million, again the $2 million has been promised, we haven’t received it yet,” said City Manager Tommy Gonzalez at Tuesday’s City Council Meeting.
Money for the upfront cost is coming from the city’s general fund. In September according to the City of El Paso 26,000 migrants were released in the city, and 50 percent did not have sponsors. City Representative Claudia Rodriguez brought up her concerns at council.
“My concerns are that we continue to do this at the cost of our local taxpayers. We were promised over four weeks ago two million dollars, have we received that money?” asked Rodriguez.Claudia Rodriguez, City Representative
“No, we have not.” responded City Deputy Manager Mario D’Agostino.
Rodriguez also speaking about unsponsored migrants from surrounding counties within the El Paso sector being sent to El Paso for processing.
“The City of El Paso is responding to five counties and not one of those counties is doing anything to step up and help the City of El Paso.”Claudia Rodriguez, City Representative
City Manager Gonzalez talks about capacity, saying U.S. Customs and Border Protection only has the capacity for a little over 1,000 migrants but currently has 5,000 per day.
“It’s a concerning situation,” said Gonzalez at Tuesday’s City Council Meeting.
On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security announced that Venezuelans who cross into the U.S. illegally will be sent back to Mexico.
Read more on the announcement from DHS here.
Editors note: This story was updated as the Mayor informed KTSM 9 News late Wednesday night they received the funds.
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