On the heels of reassurances by Texas officials to residents that the federal government will provide the funds and support for the hundreds of unaccompanied minors from Central America who are being sheltered there, Sylvia Burwell, the secretary of Health and Human Services, is warning Congress that her agency faces a budget shortfall and could be overwhelmed by the new influx of children.
In a letter obtain by the Associated Press, Burwell told members of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee that even with increased contingency funding requested by the president, the agency still faces a shortage that could lead to “the situation we faced in (2014) when children were left at the border for unacceptable periods of time.”
Agency spokesman Mark Weber said the secretary is communicating with members of Congress to take all the necessary steps to “make sure that we’re prepared,” and that the letter doesn’t demand funds beyond the president’s budget request.
Last week, Local officials in Texas said they were prepared to receive hundreds of Central American children who are described by U.S. federal authorities as having fled violence in their home countries.
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