Governor Rick Perry kicked off a meeting of ten border governors Thursday, saying the US and Mexico must share prosperity while tightening border restrictions and enforcement.
Immigration and border security will top the agenda for the two-day meeting in Austin.
The governors of California, Arizona, New Mexico and the six Mexican border states will meet privately Friday. They will discuss a joint declaration sponsored by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson.
It would establish a cross-border law enforcement task force to target human traffickers, drug smugglers and other criminals.
It also calls on both federal governments to criminalize border tunnels and punish offenders.
Richardson is expected to arrive Friday.
The event touched off several small protests over US immigration policy, with participants demanding better treatment for immigrant soldiers and an end to militarization of the border.