San Antonio Business Journal by Greg Jefferson, Reporter
Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2012, 3:19pm CDT

DPS officials are working to increase surveillance along the border.

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples contributed $225,000 to Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steven McCraw to expand the Operation Drawbridge program.

Operation Drawbridge is a program led by DPS, border sheriffs and the U.S. Border Patrol that involves the installation of motion-detecting cameras on privately owned farms and ranches along the Texas-Mexico border. Farmers and ranchers voluntarily agree to participate.

“This grant is another critical step toward securing our southern border,” Staples says. “Operation Drawbridge provides undeniable photographic proof that private landowners are constantly dealing with the dangers of deadly drug cartels and the impact of illegal human trafficking. DPS will now be able to double its current surveillance capabilities and provide much-needed assistance to the men and women who risk their lives daily to protect Texas land, residents and our food supply from border violence and spillover crime coming from dangerous Mexican drug cartels.”

According to DPS officials, since January, Operation Drawbridge has resulted in the apprehension of 4,000 individuals and the seizure of more than 10 tons of narcotics. For security reasons, DPS officials won’t disclose the exact number and locations. Cameras are monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week by the Texas Fusion Center, Texas Border Security Operations Center, DPS Communications and U.S. Border Patrol.

Department of Public Safety lands $225,000 grant - San Antonio Business Journal