In order to relieve the strain on local resources, El Paso Deputy City Manager Mario D’Agostino and other city officials requested that some migrants be moved to nearby military bases to house them after they cross the border.
According to the Daily Caller, D’Agostino is drawing this idea from previous crises. After the disastrous U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021, Afghan refugees were housed at Ft. Bliss and other army bases until they were able to find other assistance.
Customs and Border Protection reports that nearly 2,500 illegal migrants are coming into El Paso each day, and the city no longer has the bandwidth to help them all. Many migrants are sleeping on the streets.
“What we have been saying to all of our federal partners is that this Title 42 going away, with the numbers we’re seeing today is a true emergency for the community,” D’Agostino said. “It’s a federal crisis that’s happening in the border of El Paso.
“With that, they’re gonna need to do some federal operation, maybe like what we saw with the Afghans,” he added.
The city was able to accommodate CBP’s controlled release of about 250 illegal migrants per day in August, but the influx has put local homeless shelters and other resources over capacity.
Breaking! Over the weekend, the El Paso Sector experienced a major surge in illegal crossings, with a 3-day average of 2,460 daily encounters, primarily through the downtown area of El Paso. We will continue to keep the public informed as the situation evolves. pic.twitter.com/V2pOO6Y31N
— Peter Jaquez (@USBPChiefEPT) December 12, 2022
“We’re gonna need operations like that,” said deputy director for the Opportunity Center for the Homeless John Martin. “If they’re already having apprehensions of 2,500 a day when Title 42 is in place, when that goes the number could go much higher.”
Pentagon spokesman Devin T. Robinson said they are prepared to “consider requests for support.”
The city is hopeful that the government will be refunding them for the millions of dollars of funding they are about to spend to take care of the non-Americans.
Before this latest request, El Paso was already waiting for a Federal Emergency Management Agency reimbursement for $5 million spent supporting illegal immigrants and $4.7 million in costs associated with the upcoming surge.