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This photo captures the border wall between El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, with a tall and imposing steel structure dividing the two cities, stretching far into the distance.

Source: DanielIngelhart / Getty

NATIONAL — Title 42 has officially expired.  Many migrants are waiting near the border trying to figure out their next move.

The COVID-era policy was lifted just before midnight Eastern Thursday night. It had allowed for migrants to be quickly turned back at the U.S. southern border.

While U.S. border communities are getting the initial surge, officials in cities thousands of miles away say they are also expecting to be overwhelmed.

The government will now return to a decades-old section of U.S code known as Title Eight.

Officials say that carries “more severe” consequences for migrants found to be entering the country without a legal basis.

The Texas Border Czar and other state lawmakers say a surge of illegal immigrants at the border is devastating communities in the state. Mike Banks says the crisis has been created by the Biden administration.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott said immigration policies put in place by the Trump administration are needed in order to deal with the surge. He added border crossings were at their lowest number in decades three years ago because of policies put in place by former President Trump.