SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The Texas Border Coalition has published policy recommendations on immigration and border management that it would like to see the lame duck Congress address.

The recommendations are included in a new white paper from the group.

TBC represents cities and counties from El Paso to Brownsville.

TBC did not include comprehensive immigration reform in its policy recommendations, even though the group supports the measure. It said it only wanted to offer policies that have a realistic chance of being passed by Congress.

The white paper was released at TBC’s annual meeting, held at the Hotel Valencia, on the Riverwalk in San Antonio. 

El Paso County Commissioner David Stout (pictured above) was appointed chairman of TBC at the annual meeting. Stout said the group hopes the white paper will generate a a robust national debate that results in bipartisan, incremental reform of the U.S. immigration system. 

“TBC is pleased to publish this paper detailing our views on immigration and border management – key issues that divide the nation today,” Stout said. “To begin, however, it is important to understand the history that brought our state and nation to this point today. Much of what people think they know to be true may not be historically accurate.”

The white paper focuses on the history of immigration and enforcement on the Texas-Mexico border beginning with the Republic of Texas through the modern-day. It argues that successful management of the Texas-Mexico border depends on immigration and security policies reflecting economic/social reality, including those that account for the push-pull factors evident in the national and Texas economic/social landscape.

The paper also makes immigration policy recommendations limited to bipartisan legislation that has a more than 50 percent chance of being enacted this year. That includes: Passing the Dream Act, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, and the Healthcare Workforce Resilience Act; legislation to recapture thousands of unissued Green Cards and allow them to be reallocated for current use; and funding the Emergency Food and Shelter program operated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to assure that local governments and non-governmental organizations can carry on programs to address the needs of migrants entering the U.S.

As for border management proposals, TBC urges Congress to pass the Bipartisan Border Solutions Act and the Securing America’s Ports of Entry Act.

“TBC believes partisanship and animosity should play no role in solving our immigration and border management problem,” Cameron County Judge and TBC’s Immediate Past Chairman Eddie Treviño, Jr. said. “An investment in an understanding of history and reality, plus a strong dose of humanity, are needed to help resolve the border issues challenging our nation today.”

McAllen business owner Monica Weisberg-Stewart chairs the TBC Immigration and Border Security Committee. She said: “There is great urgency for Congress to act before the year is out. By tackling a limited, bipartisan package of immigration reforms, Congress can begin to build a foundation to make the American immigration system functional again. Failure to act will continue a broken system with consequences for immigrants, their families, the American economy, and society.”

The white paper is titled Texas Borders, History, Policy and Management. Click here to read the white paper: Texas Borders, History, Policy and Management.