Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Parson seeks $2.2M to send Missouri troopers, soldiers to Texas for border duty

By Rudi Keller

Sending Missouri state troopers and National Guard soldiers to Texas’s border with Mexico will cost more than $2.2 million, state officials told the House Budget Committee on Monday.

Gov. Mike Parson is sending 200 soldiers and 11 Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers to work with Texas law enforcement at the request of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.

There are about 250 National Guard soldiers already in Texas operating under federal orders, Maj. Gen. Levon Compton told the House Budget Committee. The operational commands will be separate but the goal is the same, he said.

“I have high confidence that the goal to secure the border is one that’s shared,” Compton said.

The hearing Monday was the first formal public hearing on an appropriations bill this year. The $2.2 million covers anticipated expenses through June 30, when the fiscal year ends.

The deployment could continue into the coming fiscal year as well. Funds for those operations would be needed in upcoming budget bills.

The committee took no vote on Monday.

During questioning, Democrats asked whether the funds were truly needed and whether the state would be reimbursed for the expense.

Parson already has $4 million in a fund for state emergencies and there is enough money in the patrol’s budget to cover the expense, Budget Director Dan Haug said. The $2 million for the guard deployment would only be needed if Missouri experiences a disaster at home that required a major deployment, he said.

When National Guard soldiers are deployed on a federal mission, the national treasury picks up the cost. In this deployment, lawmakers heard, it will be up to Missouri taxpayers to foot the bill.

“This should be plenty for anything that comes up but we just want to make sure we are ready for any eventuality,” Haug said.

“It seems like if that is the case we don’t need to be here doing that,” said state Rep. Peter Merideth, a Democrat from St. Louis.

The state deployment is for Operation Lone Star, launched by Abbott in 2021, that has led to tension with President Joe Biden’s administration over jurisdiction along the Rio Grande. Last year, Texas deployed a floating barrier with razor wire at a place called Eagle Pass, which is also where Texas is constructing a permanent base for state troops stationed in Eagle Pass.

National guard troops from Florida, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Virginia and West Virginia have also been sent to Texas.

Parson’s plan is to send 11 patrol troopers to Texas for 32 days and 200 guard soldiers, with rotating tours of 50 during the 90-day mission, which could be extended.

Abbott invoked provisions for mutual aid among states through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, a federally recognized program adopted by Missouri in 2018.

The patrol is sending the troopers despite being 132 patrol officers short of full strength.

“Does that not put Missouri at risk when we’re sending even more troopers away when we already have a deficit of 132?” asked state Rep. Deb Lavender, a Democrat from Manchester.

Col. Eric Olson, superintendent of the patrol, said only volunteers are going and they have been selected from eight of the patrol’s nine troop areas.

“Geographically, we spread that out,” Olson said, “and we feel like we will be able to manage this event as well as take care of our duties here at home.”


Anonymous said...

Governot Grandpa Parsnip could just as well be channeling the failed presidency of Bush the Younger:

"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."

Anonymous said...

Mikey appears to be posturing for his post governor career. The orange fat bastard dominates the weak minds like Mikey and the power crazed. I can't envision Mikey as smart enough to be anything other than a mark meadows type....a servant to the OFB to do butt wiping, and other dehumanizing sevices with unyeilding loyalty....like a lap dog.

Anonymous said...

About that book of his-

We were running low on toilet paper last night and just as I was leaving out the door on that emergency She Who Must Not Be Mentioned By Name reminded me that Parson's ghost written book had just gone on sale, and I could kill two birds with one stone.

Bring home a signed copy and well...

I told her sorry honey, that books worth about 50 cents, and that's what it will be at GoodWill as soon as the rich farts who are buying by the box donate them.

One more thing, about the only time we have had the expensive wipe was when SWMNBMBN's brother gave us some of that Ronald Reagan picture wipe. Pretty darn expensive at 4.95 a roll but talk about using a wipe that gives a nice thought each time! I mean, most everyone was smiling even before every use!

Anonymous said...

Thank you 956, my life is now complete!

Anonymous said...

No way can parson see his own pp

Anonymous said...

The phrase "that chaps my ass" has been given meaningful additional significance.

Anonymous said...

Ronald Reagan toilet paper?

Does it have his smiling face saying "There you go again"?

Anonymous said...

The Republicans are the law and order party?


Looks like he's deep in thought.

Is that what he looks like when he thinks he hears banjo music?