Texas private company paid $75 million in 1 year to bus migrants out of state, report shows

Wednesday, October 11, 2023
13 Investigates digs into cost of Abbott's migrant bussing operation
Texas has paid Wynne Transportation $75.5 million in the span of a year to transport migrants to "sanctuary cities" across the U.S., a report showed.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Texas paid a private company $75.5 million in taxpayer funds over the span of a year to transport migrants to sanctuary cities across the U.S.

Transaction data provided by the Texas Department of Emergency Management shows the state paid Wynne Transportation $75,561,032.72 from Aug. 19, 2022, through Aug. 23, 2023, to bus migrants out of state.

13 Investigates asked the department for more details on the spending, but our questions were referred to Gov. Greg Abbott's office.

In a statement Wednesday morning Abbott's spokesperson, Andrew Mahaleris, said, "Governor Abbott launched the border bus mission in April 2022 to provide support to our overrun and overwhelmed border communities as the Biden Administration dumps thousands of migrants in their towns. Texas has since bused over 54,000 migrants to self-declared sanctuary cities, providing much-needed relief. In recent weeks, border officials and NGOs in border communities have requested additional support to respond to the unprecedented surges enticed by President (Joe) Biden's reckless open border policies. Until President Biden steps up and does his job to secure the border, Texas will continue busing migrants to sanctuary cities to help our local partners respond to this Biden-made crisis."

Migrants have been transported to Washington, D.C., New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Denver, and Los Angeles, according to a news release from Abbott's office.

The state is specifically busing migrants to so-called "sanctuary cities." The City of Chicago's website says that means they "will not ask about your immigration status, disclose that information to authorities, or, most importantly, deny you City services based on your immigration status."

RELATED: Gov. Abbott buses group of migrants to California, cites 'self-declared sanctuary city status'

Gov. Greg Abbott announced that the first group of migrants bused from Texas to California had arrived.

Last week, Abbott announced a special session that includes considering "legislation to impede illegal entry into Texas by providing more funding for the construction, operation, and maintenance of border barrier infrastructure."

The special session started this week.

For updates on this story, follow Kevin Ozebek on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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