Prairie-Chicken and Border Patrol

Statement

By:  Mac Thornberry
Date: March 28, 2013
Location: Unknown

Dear Friend,

In this edition of my video mailbox, I want to answer some of your questions about the potential closures of Border Patrol stations in Texas and the Fish and Wildlife Service's upcoming decision on the Lesser Prairie-Chicken.

I continue to hear from many folks in our area who are concerned about the proposed Border Patrol station closures in Texas, including the one in Amarillo. Since last July, my office, along with other Texas House and Senate offices, has been working to prevent the proposed station closures. We have also been listening to local law enforcement officials' concerns about the gap in immigration enforcement the closures will cause.

The most recent success to halt the closures came with the latest government funding bill that specifically prohibits Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) from closing Border Patrol stations in Texas. Unfortunately, this will only halt the closures until September, but I will continue to push CBP on this issue and insist on a realistic plan to fill any enforcement gaps.

I have also received many letters, emails, and phone calls about the Fish and Wildlife Service potentially listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as a threatened species. The decision could have far reaching effects on land owners, farmers, and energy producers. There are a lot of encouraging efforts being made at the state and local level to protect the Lesser Prairie-Chicken. I am hopeful that those efforts, along with the input of folks from our part of Texas, will be enough to prevent the federal government from coming in and creating restrictions on what we can do with our private property.

I invite you to learn more about these issues by watching this edition of the video mailbox. Have a question you would like answered? Please contact me by phone, letter, e-mail,on Facebook, or on Twitter.

As always, I appreciate hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Mac