The Smith County Communications Office strives to promote transparency by providing the public with the most accurate, accessible and up-to-date information possible while promoting the county's brand and message of "Striving for Excellence."
Located on the first floor of the Smith County Annex Building
200 E. Ferguson, Suite 100
Tyler, Texas 75702
Email: Casey Murphy
Smith County Supports Creation of Texas Anti-Gang Task Force
The Smith County Commissioners Court on Tuesday, February 12, approved a resolution in support of forming a Texas Anti-Gang Center for northeast Texas in Smith County.
In Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s recent State of the State Address, he announced that it was a priority of his to see Texas Anti-Gang (TAG) Centers added in Tyler and Waco.
During Commissioners Court on Tuesday, February 12, Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said there are currently six TAGs throughout the state. They are made up of federal, state and local law enforcement teams housed under one roof, who work together to eradicate gangs.
Smith said the Texas Department of Public Safety conducted a gang threat analysis over the last two years, which showed the Northeast Texas area as one of the highest gang activity areas per capita.
The Commissioners Court also approved a “Local Administrative Agreement Between the Constituent Agencies of the Texas Anti-Gang Center, Tyler.”
If formed, the local TAG would be comprised of the Smith County Sheriff’s Office, the Tyler Police Department, Smith County District Attorney’s Office, Gregg County Sheriff’s Office, Longview Police Department, Gregg County District Attorney’s Office and the Texas Department of Public Safety, Region 1.
Smith said there could also be additional federal law enforcement agencies that join the local unit.
The cooperation and exchange of information within the local TAG, as well as the centers throughout the state, will be invaluable, Smith said.
The resolution of support that was approved by the Commissioners Court is required by the Sheriff’s Office to apply for a grant from the Attorney General’s Criminal Justice Division. The TAG will be paid for by Smith County funds, but the county will be reimbursed 100 percent for all expenditures, Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran said.
He said it could impact the county’s budget planning because the county will have to fund it a month in advance before getting reimbursed.
Smith said his office will be able to use some of the assets it already has for the TAG Center, but the grant would pay for an analyst, administrator and administrative assistant. The grant will also fund office space, equipment and information technology needs.
Smith said the local TAG will be modeled after the one in Lubbock County, which they have visited.
Moran said if approved, the local TAG could begin in Smith County by September.