By Christopher Sherman
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Gov. Rick Perry says he's deploying as many as 1,000 National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border after growing tired of "lip service" from the federal government.
Perry said Monday that the National Guard will provide additional support to a state-funded border surge that is costing an additional $1.3 million a week.
Much of the area has been overwhelmed in recent months by tens of thousands of unaccompanied children illegally entering the U.S.
Perry says criminals are exploiting the situation for human and drug trafficking.
More than 3,000 Border Patrol agents currently work in the region. The deployment of the National Guard is expected to unfold over the next 30 days.
Democrats and some Texas border sheriffs are criticizing the plan as an ill-conceived militarization.
Congressman Mike Conaway has also issued the following statement about the announcement, President Obama should follow Gov. Perry’s example and send National Guard members down to Texas’s border with Mexico to help stem the tide of illegal immigration. While I was meeting with Border Patrol agents near McAllen on July 18th, the agents said if Guard members could take care of some tasks, the Border Patrol could focus on interdiction. This is a national issue and Texans should not have to assume the cost and responsibility for stopping this flood of illegal migrant children.”