Rep. Henry Cuellar Secures $60 Million for Humanitarian Reimbursements

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Key provision will go directly to local governments and NGOs, bypassing states

Texas Border Business

Congressman Henry Cuellar
Congressman Henry Cuellar

Washington, D.C.—TodayCongressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28), vice chair of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, announced $60 million has been secured in the FY19 Homeland Security Appropriations Border Emergency Supplemental for reimbursements to local governments and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California that have incurred costs for providing humanitarian relief to the many migrants seeking asylum at the border.  This funding, which comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) via a grant, will reimburse expenses related to providing unaccompanied children and immigrant adults accompanied by a minor with food, water, hygiene products, medicine, medical supplies, temporary housing, and transportation.

“The humanitarian crisis at the southern border has placed an enormous strain on our border, including our local governments and non-profits,” said Congressman Cuellar.  These entities are providing humanitarian relief to the thousands of migrants being dropped off by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) at shelters, churches, and bus stations. The incredibly high volume of migrants being released from federal custody who require lodging, meals, and medical assistance are overwhelming support resources

“I fought hard for appropriation language that allows our local communities to be reimbursed with federal dollars for the humanitarian assistance being provided from local sources. These reimbursements to local governments and organizations will allow for continuous humane treatment of migrants by providing them with basic needs such as food, water and medicine as they travel to their destinations where they will continue their immigration court proceedings.

“I will continue working to allocate more resources to address our situation at the border, such as hiring additional Department of Homeland Security personnel and immigration judges at the border.

“I would like to thank Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey, Homeland Security Subcommittee Chairwoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, and Appropriations members on both sides of the aisle for working to give our border communities the deserved relief they desperately need.”  

Since 2014, Congressman Cuellar has ensured border communities have had an opportunity to be reimbursed for the hard-earned taxpayer dollars expended in support of law enforcement and community humanitarian efforts to address the surge of migrants.  He has secured language in appropriations bills authorizing FEMA to allow Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) recipients and subrecipients located along the Southwest border to use grant funding for costs, or reimbursement of costs, related to providing humanitarian relief to unaccompanied alien children and alien adults accompanied by an alien minor where they are encountered after entering the United States.

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