Border security back in front of Texas lawmakers

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agent Sanchez patrols along the Rio Grande near Wednesday, June 8, 2011 in Penitas, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agent Sanchez patrols along the Rio Grande near Wednesday, June 8, 2011 in Penitas, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

AUSTIN (AP) — Plans to ramp up patrols along the Texas-Mexico border at a potential cost of $1.3 million a week are getting new attention in the Capitol.

Texas Department of Public Safety officials are to testify Tuesday about border operations before the Texas House Committee on Homeland Security and Public Safety. The hearing comes two weeks after Gov. Rick Perry took the rare step of authorizing additional spending for an “operational surge.”

The committee meets as both Republicans and Democrats say a “humanitarian crisis” unfolds along the border.

More than 52,000 unaccompanied children have been apprehended entering the United States illegally since October.

Perry and other top Republicans say the situation has increased the potential for drug and human trafficking as border agents deal instead with the flood of children.

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