Chaos at the border was the forecast for the day last week when the Federal government lifted Title 42a pandemic rule that limited immigrant requests for asylum and made it easier to deport people. But the number of people asking to cross actually dropped.

KGUN9 On Your Side asked two border sheriffs why they think Title 42 did not play out as expectedand asked what they think should happen next.

With Title 42 lifted a different set of asylum rules is in effect now. But if asylum seekers think getting asylum is a lost cause will they risk a trek through the desert instead?

In Nogales when Title 42 officially lifted , the border crossing at the DiConcini Port of Entry was far quieter than the mass of people some had anticipated.

Over the weekend Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said rather than a surge, border crossings dropped by half when Title 42 lapsed.

Sheriffs often remind us immigration is a Federal responsibility. But the Sheriffs of Santa Cruz and Pima County were still watching closely as Title 42 lifted

Santa Cruz County Sheriff David Hathaway says, All along (Ive) said that this is really overblown it kind of reminded me of the y2k era where the sky is gonna fall and the world is going to come to an end and I told everybody, look, this is just going back to normal Title Eight processing.

Pima County Sheriff Chris Nanos says, First it was the sky is falling. Chicken Little. It didn’t fall. Now the aftermath is, Wait, what happened? So we got through that. What do we need to do to make it better?

Sheriff Nanos gives a lot of credit for the calm transition to Border Patrol and Immigration officials and to migrants themselves who waited and tried to abide by the law.

Hes frustrated by the long standing party versus party impasse on border reforms.

If you don’t like our immigration laws, then quit yelling and screaming at your local government officials and quit yelling and screaming even at the Presidents. Who you should be yelling, screaming at in my eyes is Congress because Congress has sat on this for decades, my entire life.

Sheriff Hathaway would like to see many more immigration judges on the border ready to handle asylum claims on the spot.

That’s the way it used to be, you had your claim adjudicated right away. Now they keep kicking the can down the road and now you have 10s of 1000s of people on these lists. If they ever get to you it’s going to be years in the future.

And both Sheriffs say if someone has no hope of asylum or a case that could take years to resolve they may just decide to take their chances in an illegal, dangerous walk through the desert.