Presidio sheriff met with Abbott to discuss border crisis

AUSTIN – Presidio County Sheriff Danny Dominguez traveled to Austin over the weekend alongside 11 other border sheriffs for another border security briefing held by Texas Governor Greg Abbott at the State Capitol.

At the meeting, Abbott discussed the influx of undocumented immigrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. “Each of these counties are dealing with a record number of people who are coming across the border. They are the tip of the spear. They are the ones who are having to deal with immediate consequences unlike anything they’ve ever seen,” Abbott said in a video his office put out.

Abbott was joined by Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw, Texas Division of Emergency Management Chief Nim Kidd, and Adjutant General of Texas Tracy Norris. However, the press release related to the roundtable made no mention of personnel from Customs and Border Protection attending the meeting.

Last Wednesday, the governor listed border security funding as a priority on the special legislative session that began the following day. “I called for legislation this special session to provide more border security funding for law enforcement and counties. This funding will help us better step up to meet this challenge and gives our border communities the resources and support they need,” Abbott said.

As The Big Bend Sentinel reported this week, the 87th special legislative session came to an abrupt halt after a majority of Texas’ Democratic lawmakers fled the state, leaving the House without a quorum and preventing the Legislature from voting on Abbott’s priority items.

Brewster County Sheriff Ronny Dodson did not attend the meeting in Austin due to a scheduling conflict. “I don’t know what they talked about, but I haven’t seen any action,” Dodson said in regards to the state’s intervention in border security affairs.

Jeff Davis County Sheriff William “Bill” Kitts also did not make it out to Austin. Kitts could not be reached for comment.

This is the second border security meeting Abbott has hosted for local officials in Texas. On June 9, County Judge Cinderela Guevara traveled to Del Rio to take part in the “Border Security Summit,” where Abbott discussed the steps his office is taking to “secure our southern border and combat the ongoing humanitarian crisis.” Sheriff Dominguez also attended this meeting in June.

“At the local level they need more manpower in dealing with gangs that operate on both sides of the border,” the governor said at the briefing over the weekend. “Bottom line is, because of the current administration’s complete abandonment, they have left it to the State of Texas as well as to the counties that are represented here today to have to pick up the load of responding to the unprecedented number of people coming into our country.”

Dominguez did not respond to a request for comment. Oscar Carillo, the sheriff out of Culberson, was also in attendance at the roundtable. Carillo, likewise, did not respond to a request for comment.