Thursday, May 9, 2019

Pentagon Has Redirected Money to Build 256 Miles of Border Barriers, Shanahan Says

Gregory Bull/Associated Press
The Pentagon has redirected enough money to build 256 miles of barriers along the southwestern border, including 63 miles within six months, the acting defense secretary told lawmakers on Wednesday.
The remarks by the secretary, Patrick M. Shanahan, were a major step in President Trump’s effort to build his border wall without congressional authorization since he declared a national emergency and took other measures to redirect funds in February. They came the same day immigration officials reported that illegal border crossings continued to surge in April, with the highest number of monthly arrests since 2007.
Mr. Trump’s efforts to divert funds to build the barriers are facing challenges in court, and have met fierce resistance from Democrats and some Republicans in Congress. Democrats have also expressed skepticism about a White House request for billions of dollars more in enforcement efforts at the border.
But Mr. Shanahan, testifying before the Senate Appropriations Committee, vowed to push ahead. He said about half a mile of barrier would be built each day, using money that includes funds reallocated from the Department of Homeland Security and Treasury forfeiture assets.
“How you will see this materialize in the next six months is that about 63 additional new miles of wall will come online,” Mr. Shanahan said.
Mr. Shanahan, who said there are also now 4,364 National Guard and active-duty troops along the border, has already authorized the first transfer of Defense Department funds to fencing construction.
Read the rest of the story HERE.

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