After weeks of public outcry and border delays, Governor Greg Abbott halted his controversial truck inspections. Abbott signed agreements with four Mexican states to increase security on their side of the border. The policy was a response to the Biden Administration’s plans to end Title 42, a pandemic border policy that allows customs officials to turn away migrants at the US border.
Abbott reached agreements with four Mexican states that border Texas: Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas. Though successful in this regard, he still drew the ire of Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. López Obrador criticized the policy on Monday, prompting a threat from Abbott to reinstate it.
Texas is far from the only state concerned about the impending repeal of Title 42. More than 20 states have asked a Louisiana federal judge to block the Biden Administration from ending the policy. As it is, the administration plans to end the order on May 23.
Truck inspections caused delays and GDP loss
Abbott’s policy attracted controversy from the start. When he began the truck inspections on April 6, critics raised concerns about increased wait times at the border. On Wednesday, a Texas economist validated these concerns with a report stating that Abbott’s policy cost Texas $4.2 billion in goods and services. Nationally, the policy cost about $1 billion per day.
The truck inspections also led to a massive increase in delays at the border for truckers. Wait times increased by an estimated 16 times. Abbott’s order was met with protests at various major border crossings as truckers decried the policy. The American Trucking Associations was among those who condemned the policy, calling it “redundant.” Though some in the trucking industry agreed with the policy’s goals, they disagreed broadly with its methods.
The extra truck inspections have stopped, but Abbott has indicated that the policy could return if the four Mexican states do not hold up their ends of the agreements. Therefore, it’s important for truckers to bake in extra travel time if they’re crossing the border. And, if you’re hiring a truck for an international delivery or move, you should trust the professionals.