Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Governor's Initiatives - Border Security

Related Content


August 9, 2010 - Gov. Perry on his letter to President Obama and the present state of border security.

Gov. Perry's Letter to President Obama
August 9, 2010 - Governor Rick Perry's Letter to President Obama   View Letter »

Gov. Perry's Letter to President Obama
February 26, 2009 - Governor Rick Perry's Letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano concerning the transport of illegal aliens to Texas   View Letter »


September 11, 2009 - Colonel Steve McCraw, Director, TX Dept. of Public Safety on the Ranger Recon operation.


June 3, 2009 - Harold L. Hurtt - Houston Police Chief

There can be no homeland security without border security, and there can be no higher priority than protecting our citizens.

While our focus begins with preventing the worst of the violence currently raging in northern Mexico from spilling over into the United States, the violence is only part of the destruction that can result from a porous border. The free flow of drugs, weapons and people resulting from inadequate security can undercut economic development, education and trade. As such, they can hurt Texas families in every way imaginable, from loss of jobs to the loss of family members to addiction, imprisonment or death.

Border security is a federal responsibility but a Texas problem, and Texas has invested hundreds of millions of state dollars in efforts to support and supplement security forces already in place. Still, this is a problem that will only be solved with more federal accountability and involvement.

Action Items

»  Starting in 2005 with Operation Linebacker, the state has sought to provide funding, manpower and equipment to local law enforcement agencies operating along the Texas-Mexico border.
»  In 2007 Operation Border Star was introduced, which builds on the successes of previous operations with unprecedented local, state and federal law enforcement coordination. With the assistance of the 80th and 81st Legislatures, the State of Texas has been able to appropriate more than $110 million each session to fund and amplify these efforts.
»  In response to a rising tide of gang violence in Texas communities, the Governor allocated $4 million in criminal justice grants to cities across the state to increase patrols of gang hotspots. In 2009, Gov. Perry worked to secure more than $10 million in state funding for enhanced anti-gang efforts during the 2010-11 biennium.
»  In September 2009, Gov. Perry announced the formation of highly-skilled Ranger Recon Teams — which include Texas Rangers, Texas National Guard Counterdrug forces, Highway Patrol and DPS Aviation assets — in order to address threats building in the unincorporated areas along the Texas-Mexico border.
»  Since early 2009, Gov. Perry has repeatedly called on Washington to authorize the deployment of 1,000 Title 32 National Guard soldiers to the Texas-Mexico border to support border security operations currently underway. (see letter to President Obama, letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and request to Defense Secretary Gates)
»  Gov. Perry has also recommended an expeditious deployment of unmanned aerial vehicles to provide real-time surveillance and intelligence to law enforcement on the ground.
»  In 2011, Governor Perry again worked with the Texas Legislature to increase funding for border security. These efforts allowed for the implementation of Operation Drawbridge, which utilizes portable cameras that detect movement and transmit the captured images to multiple receivers. As of 2012, Operation Drawbridge has yielded 13,606 detections, 5,526 apprehensions, and over 13 tons of narcotics seized. These 2011 efforts also resulted in the addition of six 34-foot shallow water interceptors to patrol the Texas-Mexico border.

News & Announcements

  • Friday, September 26, 2014 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Texas State Guard Saves Lives During Search for Human Remains in Brooks County
    A special state search team, trained in rescue and recovery operations and ordered by Gov. Rick Perry to assist Brooks County with locating human remains of suspected illegal immigrants, is also saving lives during its mission.
  • Wednesday, September 17, 2014 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Gov. Perry Sends Letter to Mexican President Peña Nieto, Invites Him to Texas
    "I read with interest and concern your comments regarding border security on the week of September 11, which called Texas' increased law enforcement presence on the border "unpleasant" and "reprehensible." As neighbors and economic partners, Mexico and the United States are inextricably bound by shared interests and culture. As friends we might not always agree, but we must have an honest and respectful dialogue about the challenges we share, which is why I write to you today."
  • Wednesday, September 10, 2014 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    In Case You Missed It: Texas National Guard Arrives at Border in Support of Operation Strong Safety
    The Texas Military Forces (TMF) report the first group of Texas National Guard (TXNG) soldiers and airmen have arrived along the Texas-Mexico border to take up observational posts in support of the Texas Department of Public Safety's (DPS) Operation Strong Safety.
  • Wednesday, August 13, 2014 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Gov. Perry Visits Texas National Guard Soldiers and Airmen Training for Deployment in Support of Operation Strong Safety
    Gov. Rick Perry today visited the Camp Swift Army National Guard Training facility for a status report on the Texas National Guard's (TXNG) training and deployment in support of Operation Strong Safety to combat crime and drug cartel activity in the border region. The governor, joined by Texas Adjutant General John Nichols and Texas Dept. of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steve McCraw, thanked the soldiers and airmen for their commitment and dedication to protecting our state and our nation.
  • Monday, July 21, 2014 • Austin, Texas • Press Release
    Gov. Perry Deploys Texas National Guard Troops to Border
    Gov. Rick Perry today directed Texas Adjutant General John Nichols to immediately begin preparations for the deployment of up to 1,000 National Guard troops to the border. These troops will support the Texas Department of Public Safety's (DPS) ongoing law enforcement surge, Operation Strong Safety, which is focused on combatting criminal activity in the region resulting from the federal government's failure to adequately secure the border.