Brownsville gears up for President Biden’s visit to discuss border crisis

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – President Joe Biden is set to visit Brownsville on Thursday to meet with Broder Patrol agents, law enforcement, and local leaders.

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas will be joining Biden in his visit to the border, the second of his presidency.

The visit comes on the heels of a low month of migrant encounters in the region.

CBP data shows the Rio Grande Valley saw 7,340 encounters in January 2024.

Cameron County Sheriff Eric Garza said even with the lull in crossings, the migrant crisis is still straining resources.

Garza said he wants the president and Congress to come up with a solution.

“Every border county is different,” he said. “Everyone handles their situation differently. As far as Cameron County is concerned, I want to tell him — hey, what’s going on here, what we need to ensure that we continue to safeguard our citizens, to safeguard our border, and to safeguard our nation.”

While migrant crossings in the Rio Grande Valley sector are low, non-governmental agencies are still helping those who cross into the U.S.

Astrid Dominguez, the Executive Director of Good Neighbor Settlement House in Brownsville said there’s a perception the border is chaotic.

“I would like the president to know that our city continues to support the welcoming efforts, just like any other NGO on the U.S.-Mexico border,” she said. “We’re happy to be a partner with them, we’re happy to be a partner with the city and we’d like him to see our operation.”

Dominguez said she doesn’t know if she’ll get to speak with Biden. She hopes he takes the time to hear from those working directly with migrants.

“We are a border city, this is not new for us,” said Dominguez. “For the past 100 years, we’ve been serving and servicing the migrants coming through our region, whether establishing here or not. We’re a welcoming city along with many other border towns.”

San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg will be among the leaders meeting with the president during his visit.

Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar was invited to speak with the president, but BCSO said Salazar declined due to a scheduling conflict.

Former president Donald Trump will also be on the border Thursday, more than 300 miles away in Eagle Pass.

KSAT will have crews in Eagle Pass and in Brownsville to cover the visits.

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