Facing longer deployment, Texas National Guard wants 'predictability' on border timeframe

The commander of the Texas National Guard wants "predictability" for his troops who are living in motels along the border with Mexico and have the end of their deployment up in the air again.

The request by Maj. Gen. John Nichols to lawmakers Wednesday comes after Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said he doesn't want the guard to end their mission in March as originally planned.

As many as 1,000 National Guard troops have patrolled the Rio Grande Valley since last summer on the orders of then-Gov. Rick Perry.

But his successor has been quiet since Patrick suggested this week that new Gov. Greg Abbott is on board with a longer deployment.

Abbott's office hasn't commented, and Nichols wouldn't say whether a decision on a longer deployment has been made.