RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The State of Texas is offering help to ranchers and farmers who say their property has been damaged by smuggling activity.
A Rio Grande Valley rancher says it will definitely help him.
“I come to the ranch and I ranch and do my own labor around the ranch and that to me helps me clear my mind,” Juan Garcia, a Starr County rancher said.
Though many of these RGV ranches have been in the family for generations, there are many stressors in this line of work.
One difficulty is illegal drug or human smuggling through their land.
“There’s been some migrants that go through my property and either do some damage to the fence lines and the, big one, is leaving some trash behind. And of course, our cattle getting to the plastic bags,” Garcia added.
Damage to ranch fencing can be dangerous for everyone.
“Fences also have sustained damages which in turn could be a public hazard because if a fence is down and cattle get out on the highway, people can get hurt the providing funds for farmers or ranchers and property has been destroyed,” Omar Montemayor of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension said.
During a stop in McAllen, Governor Greg Abbott spoke on what the state is doing about this issue.
“We will also, for the first time ever, be providing funds for farmers and for ranchers whose property has been destroyed,” Abbott announced.
Abbott says these ranchers are only dealing with this problem because of where their property is located.
“I know that we need all the help that we can get, the federal or state,” the Starr County rancher said.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension adds that ranchers or anyone in the RGV can attend their workshop for advanced ranch management. The event will have experts answer ranchers’ questions about their rights when it comes to cleaning up property damage.
“The last workshop that we’re having is going to be focusing on agricultural law. So we’re hoping a lot of, we’re hoping to get some local attorneys,” Montemayor noted.
The four-session workshop starts in June and ends in August.
The first session of the Texas A&M Advanced Management series will be June 7th in San Manuel.