EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Federal officials continue to fly migrants out of El Paso for processing elsewhere to “decompress” a holding facility operating at three times its intended capacity.
The daily flights typically carry 135 migrants from El Paso primarily to South Texas destinations, federal officials told Border Report on Wednesday.
The flights and hundreds of recent releases of paroled migrants on El Paso streets are meant to reduce the overcrowding at the U.S. Border Patrol’s Central Processing station. The facility in the northeast part of the city is housing an average of 3,660 migrants in its buildings and overflow areas.
The overcrowding mirrors a large number of unauthorized migrants – an average of 1,650 a day – still being apprehended in the El Paso Sector despite an ebb in the arrival of Venezuelan migrants. The Venezuelan surge of September and early October prompted city officials to open a “welcoming center” and spend millions on meals, hotels and busing for migrants. The city expects the federal government to reimburse it for those expenses.
The Oct. 12 implementation of Title 42 expulsions for Venezuelans that cross the border illegally has drastically reduced that surge. Mexican officials on Tuesday told Border Report that CBP has not expelled to Juarez any Venezuelans since last week.
But Cubans, Colombians, Nicaraguans, Ecuadorans, and citizens of other countries continue to arrive, officials on both sides of the border say. Those found not to have grounds to be in the United States are expelled under the Title 42 public health order; the others are placed under Title 8 procedures which may lead to their release under a notice to appear in immigration court at a later date.