Victoria County to shift some of its Lone Star funds | News

Victoria County to shift some of its Lone Star funds | News

Victoria County commissioners are expected to shift some grant funding from Operation Lone Star, Gov. Greg Abbott’s program bolstering the southern border with Mexico, during Monday morning’s meeting.

Ben Zeller

Victoria County Commissioners Court Judge Ben Zeller

“It will be an adjustment within the grant,” County Judge Ben Zeller said. “It’s been a significant help to the sheriff’s office in terms of transportation costs and personnel. It’s gone a long way to support those operations.”

Operation Lone Star is jointly managed by the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Military Department to counter illegal immigration and the illegal drug trade.

Abbott provided $100 million in grant funding to Texas counties to help enforcement efforts. Victoria County plans to transfer the almost $1.5 million received to cover a variety of personnel costs, including overtime, professional services, travel and training, equipment and supplies and direct operating expenses.

“It’s a line-item transfer as far as our local sheriff’s office,” said Zeller, who will not be a Monday’s meeting. 

There is no change in the award amount, Zeller said.

Migrant encounters at the border are higher today than they were before Gov. Greg Abbott’s Operation Lone Star began

Department of Public Safety agents arrest a group of migrants as part of Operation Lone Star on Nov. 8, 2021, after they were caught on private property in Kinney County.

The Federation for American Immigration Reform, based in Washington, reported Texas showed a 6.9 percent increase in monthly migrant encounters at the border during Operation Lone Star. In comparison, New Mexico, Arizona and California showed an increase of between 30 percent and 47 percent. The group said because Texas border traffic is the heaviest in the nation, Lone Star was having an impact. FAIR describes itself as a nonpartisan public interest organization.

Abbott launched Operation Lone Star in March 2021 to help secure the border and prevent human and drug trafficking. 

Victoria County Commissioners’ Court meets Monday at 10 a.m. at 115 N. Bridge St., Room 241, in Victoria.

A long-time journalist, George likes 60s musclecars and firearms.

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