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Enhanced safety inspections led to a loss of $1 billion in trade, city of Pharr says

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With Gov. Greg Abbott announcing the end of enhanced safety inspections of all commercial vehicles coming into the state from Mexico through international bridges, the city of Pharr is still dealing with the economic impact of the inspections.

The safety inspections led to “significant delays” in border crossings that “resulted in an economic loss of approximately $202 million in trade value lost per day, and an estimated total trade value loss of $1 billion,” a news release from the city of Pharr stated. 

RELATED: Gov. Abbott ends enhanced inspections at all Valley bridges

“City of Pharr officials worked closely with Governor Abbott's office, showing the detrimental impact the directive was having in slowing trade and commerce at the Pharr International Bridge,” according to the news release. 

City leaders worked with the Texas-Mexico Border federal and state legislative delegation and other officials to ensure a solution was found.

“City of Pharr officials were pleased to learn that an agreement has been made between the State of Texas and the State of Tamaulipas in Mexico to cease enhanced DPS inspections,” the release stated.

READ THE FULL STATEMENT BELOW

City of Pharr officials were pleased to learn that an agreement has been made between the State of Texas and the State of Tamaulipas in Mexico to cease enhanced DPS inspections that had been in effect since April 6, 2022, when Texas Governor Greg Abbott directed the Texas Department of Public Safety to conduct enhanced safety inspections of vehicles as they cross international ports of entry into Texas. The enhanced inspections caused significant delays in commercial border crossings, increasing average wait time to approximately 10-12 hours.

City of Pharr Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, M.D., city officials and staff worked tirelessly to impress the importance of a swift resolution of the issue, which resulted in an economic loss of approximately $202 million in trade value lost per day, and an estimated total trade value loss of $1 billion.

"We completely understand the need for safety and security at the border. When we saw the impact that the Governor's directive was having on our international commerce, causing significant delays and millions in economic losses, we knew we had to take immediate action and work with our partners to promote a swift resolution of the issue," said Mayor Hernandez. 

City of Pharr officials worked closely with Governor Abbott's office, showing the detrimental impact the directive was having in slowing trade and commerce at the Pharr International Bridge. City leaders also worked tirelessly with the entire Texas-Mexico Border federal and state legislative delegation, including U. S. Senator John Cornyn, Texas State Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Texas House Transportation Chairman Representative Terry Canales, and Texas State Representative Sergio Munoz, Jr. Through correspondence, phone calls, and video demonstrations of the border crossing delays, Pharr took proactive measures along with our state and federal leaders to work toward a solution that would alleviate the situation.

The City of Pharr thanks our South Texas legislative delegation for their efforts to promote a mutually-beneficial resolution to this issue that protects the safety and security of our international border while keeping the flow of commercial activity functioning swiftly and effectively.

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