AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association today testified before the Texas House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security and Public Safety. Second vice president Stephen Diebel of Victoria spoke on behalf of the association’s more than 17,000 memberships and addressed the hardships many face due to rampant illegal border crossings.
“These are the men and women who make it possible for you to order a hamburger at the drive-through or grill a steak on your back porch for Memorial Day, and they’re having to worry about themselves or their kids running into armed trespassers on their own property,” said Diebel. “It’s their personal safety, security and their livelihood.”
In his testimony, he reminded the committee members that ranchers and landowners are right beside law enforcement officers on the front lines of the battle, confronting regular thefts, burglaries, damaged infrastructure and even armed intimidation.
During the hearing, Deibel also announced the formation of a border security task force within the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. The group, which consists of more than a dozen South Texas ranchers, plus staff and TSCRA Special Rangers, will utilize their extensive experience to guide association efforts on border security.
From identifying concerns and solutions to serving as a liaison for policymakers and the public, the task force will focus on collaboration to end the border crisis for Texas cattle producers and landowners.
The call for cooperation was also a key piece of Diebel’s message to the Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee. “As Texas moves forward in addressing this problem in the absence of the federal government, I would urge continued collaboration between everyone involved,” he concluded.