More than 100 landowners are working with Texas to complete the construction of the state’s southern border wall by allowing officials to put up temporary fencing on their land, according to the Washington Examiner.
As Texas officially prepares to award its contract for the border-wall project, 123 Texans, most of whom live in Val Verde County, have agreed to allow builders to put up an 8-foot-tall, barbed-wire fence at the edge of their properties.
Gov. Greg Abbott’s office said many of these landowners actually reached out to the state first about the fencing, because illegal immigration on their property was leading to rising rates of criminal incidents.
According to Abbott’s spokeswoman, Renae Eze, the landowners are not being compensated or incentivized for giving the government access to their land. The incentive, she said, “is securing their land and our southern border.”
Abbott announced earlier this summer that Texas would complete former President Donald Trump’s border wall project along its part of the southern border to combat surging illegal immigration.
The state legislature has pledged to spend about $750 million on the wall, but private citizens have also donated to the effort. As of August, private donations to the project had soared to more than $54 million, according to Abbott’s fundraising website.
“We are grateful for the outpouring of support from across our state and the entire country as Texas fills the gap created by President Biden and steps up to secure our southern border,” Eze said in a statement.
“Cartels and smugglers are profiting off the chaos as they overwhelm and divert our nation’s resources so they can smuggle drugs, weapons, criminals, and other contraband across our border,” Eze added. “While the Biden Administration may not prioritize the sovereignty of our nation or the safety of our people, Americans clearly do.”