HOUSTON — The Texas National Guard has been on the border for more than nine months as part of Operation Lone Star to combat what Gov. Greg Abbott has called a rise in human trafficking.
Some of those guardsmen said they aren’t getting their full paychecks.
Operation Lone Star kicked off in March by the Texas Department of Public Safety and Abbott.
“These sites are a direct result of President (Joe) Biden's reckless open-border policy," Abbott said at the time.
Blaming Biden, Abbott said the cartels ramped up human trafficking and drug smuggling. The new operation put hundreds of Texas National Guardsmen on the border but some said they are having issues with their paychecks.
“I've been part of the military family for my entire life. I’ve never been more frustrated or more disappointed in the military leadership than I have with what’s going on right now," the wife of one service member told KHOU 11 News. She asked not to be identified.
She said her husband is only getting about 75% of what he’s owed.
“He’s not being provided pay stubs so he has no real way to track how that’s being calculated. He knows that he is missing some of it, but as far as what the exact amount is he has no idea because there’s no accounting paperwork that comes with his paycheck," she said.
In a statement to KHOU 11 News, the Texas Military Department confirmed the problem.
"There are approximately 150 service members experiencing pay issues. These pay issues are primarily systems and administrative errors and we are working directly with the Comptroller’s Office and each individual service member impacted to correct each one. Additionally, our agency has a robust support program available to all service members and their families, designed to provide needed resources during difficult times and can help support service members experiencing system-constrained pay delays while the issues are being fixed."
But the wife said she just wants answers.
“He’s really not being told anything other than it’s coming. As far as a timeline, as far as being provided some sort of paper trail as to what he should be getting paid, he’s not been given anything," she said.
The Texas Military Department provided more information on what they're doing to fix the issue:
"Our service members and their families come first and we are dedicated to fixing these issues for all impacted service members as quickly as possible. Our agency has a hotline set up specifically to enable service members the ability to make a direct call in order to address pay issues. Additionally, we have a staff section dedicated to daily pay input and validation, and we have trained representatives in each region our border task force supports, working to ensure expedited delivery of pay to forward-deployed service members."