AUSTIN, TX- Today, at the Texas Transportation Commission (TxDOT) meeting, $60 million was committed to border districts for border infrastructure and transportation projects as a result of a rider authored and placed in the state budget by Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa.
Rider 11b in the Transportation bill pattern of the state budget for 2016-17, also known as the Border Infrastructure Rider, directs TxDOT to allocate funds for improvements designated to facilitate traffic and improve the efficiency of border inspection and security processes at land ports of entry along the Texas-Mexico border. Today the Commission announced that the amount of funding associated with this rider would be $60 million and will formally be approved at next month’s meeting.
Senator Hinojosa was in attendance at the hearing today to offer his thanks to TxDOT and as well as to highlight the importance of the border to our Texas economy:
“I thank the Commission for taking action on Rider 11(b) and allocating $60 million for border infrastructure funding. Continuing to invest in border infrastructure to fund improvements designated to facilitate the movement of people and goods is an important investment for the future of all Texans since transportation is the lifeblood of our economy.
Our border bridges facilitate trade with Mexico and is Texas’ largest trading partner at $200 billion a year. This is a significant benefit to our state, and the people from Mexico who come into our communities to shop, eat, and spend money increases the sales tax to our local communities as well as to our state.
I encourage TxDOT to continue supporting investment in border infrastructure and future projects as it is the future of Texas.”
Senator Hinojosa also proudly introduced many individuals from along the border who were also in attendance to support the funding for border infrastructure:
- Pete Sepulveda, Cameron County Judge
- Bobby Villarreal, Representing Hidalgo County Judge Ramon Garcia
- Jim Darling, Mayor, City of McAllen
- Rigo Villarreal, McAllen Superintendent of Bridges
- Mathew McElroy, El Paso Bridge Director
- Jesse Hereford, Border Trade Alliance
- David Guerra & Gerry Schuekel, Representing IBC Bank
- Ryan Rapelye, Assistant City Manager, City of Del Rio
- Randy Sweeten, Chairman, Hidalgo County Regional Mobility Authority
Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa proudly represents the counties of Nueces, Jim Wells, Brooks, and Hidalgo (part). Senator Hinojosa served as the Senate President Pro Tempore of the Texas Senate in the 84th Texas Legislature. Senator Hinojosa currently serves as Vice-Chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance, and serves on the Senate Committees on Natural Resources & Economic Development, Criminal Justice, Agriculture, Water & Rural Affairs as well as the Sunset Advisory Commission.