Texas lawmakers scrutinize costs of beefed up border

WILL WEISSERT, Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A legislative committee is scrutinizing the more-than-$5 million a week Texas spends on beefed-up security along the Mexican border amid a surge of unaccompanied immigrant children.

The special Texas House committee on border operations meets Tuesday after the state announced it was spending an extra $1.2 million per week on border security.

That “operational surge” means more helicopters, armed boats and police troopers — but exactly how it’s being spent hasn’t been made public.

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Meanwhile, Gov. Rick Perry is deploying up to 1,000 National Guard troops to the border at a weekly cost of $4 million.

More than 57,000 unaccompanied children have poured into the U.S. illegally since October.

Perry says crime has spiked as federal immigration authorities have been overwhelmed. Critics, though, say that claim is dubious.