YUMA – The City of Yuma reported that it is working closely with federal, state and regional partners to plan and prepare for an anticipated surge of migrants once Title 42 concludes to return to full use of Title 8 for immigration enforcement processes.
According to the City Council, the city has been preparing for the lifting of Title 42 and holds regular conversations about border concerns with state and federal elected officials.
In addition, local officials are also in regular conversations with the Border Patrol, as well as community partners such as the Regional Center for Border Health (RCBH), Yuma County, and the communities of Somerton and San Luis.
The City Council noted that there was community concern that the Yuma Readiness and Community Center (YRCC) could be used for the release of migrants, so he reiterated that at no time was the YRCC considered as a release site by Border Patrol; however, he said it is prudent that in an emergency, all City facilities are evaluated.
The Yuma region sees over a thousand migrants crossing the border each day. DHS and RCBH provide out-of-area transportation for migrants. Once Title 42 ends, the Yuma Sector of the Border Patrol will be even busier and may reach maximum capacity.
In the event that DHS and RCBH reach maximum capacity and cannot keep up with the influx of migrants, the City indicated that it may need to work with other federal, state and local governments and non-governmental organizations to address this humanitarian crisis.
The City reported that it does not have funds available for transportation, food and lodging for migrants and should it need to provide any services, it would seek reimbursement from relevant state and federal agencies.
In December 2021, Mayor Douglas Nicholls issued a Proclamation of Emergency due to the unprecedented number of migrants entering the area, resulting in a humanitarian and border crisis. This emergency proclamation is still in effect.
Last month, the Mayor of Yuma, testified before the Government Operations and Border Management subcommittee in Washington, D.C. This week he participated in Governor Hobbs’ press conference outlining Arizona’s Title 42 five-point preparedness approach to managing the anticipated influx of migrants.