Posted: Jul 14, 2014 3:22 PM
Updated: Jul 14, 2014 3:57 PM
WESLACO - BCFS Health and Human Services secured a $50-million federal contract to house young illegal immigrants in Weslaco.
The network of non-profit agencies will take over the Palm Aire Hotel and Suites on FM 1015.
BCFS officials say they plan to have 600 beds once the hotel is turned into immigrant housing. They say 650 jobs will be created at the site.
BCFS is the agency that set up a temporary detention center for unaccompanied minors at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. They said the Weslaco facility will be the first of its kind in the nation.
"It's going to be an intake facility, which serves as a lot like a hospital emergency room," Krista Piferrer, BCFS VP External Affairs said.
"We've all seen the photos and the videos of children in crowded Border Patrol facilities. What this site is going to allow to happen is quickly move those children out of Border Patrol cells and triage them," Piferrer said.
BCFS is in the process of applying for a conditional license with the city of Weslaco.