President Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is spending border wall funds, previously allocated by Congress to construct a wall along the United States-Mexico border, on addressing “life, safety, [and] environmental,” issues.
In July 2021, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced the administration’s plans to spend American taxpayer money on a host of issues, including environmental restoration, rather than expanding on the border’s existing wall constructed during the Trump administration.
On Friday, Mayorkas detailed plans to close some of the border wall’s gaps that have remained since Biden halted all construction of border wall in late January 2021.
As part of that effort, Mayorkas said in a news release that DHS is moving “forward with projects in the San Diego, El Centro, Yuma, El Paso, and Rio Grande Valley Sectors to address life, safety, environmental, or other remediation requirements in accordance with [DHS’s] plan for the use of border barrier funds.”
The DHS news release states:
DHS continues to review other paused border barrier projects presenting life, safety, environmental, or other remediation needs and has begun environmental planning, to include planning consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), for not yet completed projects in accordance with the Department’s plan. [Emphasis added]
Mayorkas also noted that DHS “continues to call on Congress to cancel remaining appropriations for barrier system construction” in an initiative to get border wall funding dropped so that the agency no longer has to spend the funds on closing certain gaps.
According to DHS, some of the border wall funds will got to:
Replacing an existing dilapidated train gate with a modernized train gate in El Centro to address current life and safety risks posed to Agents and migrants due to regular train operations. [Emphasis added]
Constructing retractable gates underneath an existing bridge across the New River in Imperial County, California to address risks associated with the extremely hazardous river waters. [Emphasis added]
Constructing a train and vehicle gate in the El Paso Sector to address current life and safety risks posed to Agents and migrants due to regular train operations. [Emphasis added]
Replacing deteriorated barrier located adjacent to Friendship Circle in Imperial County, California that has not been properly treated to withstand corrosion from nearby ocean waters and currently poses safety risks to Border Patrol Agents, community members, and migrants. [Emphasis added]
Closing a gap by constructing a vertical lift gate system over the Tijuana River to address safety concerns resulting from the polluted conditions of the river channel. [Emphasis added]
Closing a small gap in the Yuma Sector that remains as a result of previous border barrier construction activities and poses a life and safety risk to Agents and the community. [Emphasis added]
Completing 17 gates and conducting site clean-up work in the Rio Grande Valley Sector that currently makes it difficult for Border Patrol Agents to efficiently access certain areas and for first responders to respond to incidents. [Emphasis added]
Last year, Rep. Ashley Hinson (R-IA) accused the Biden administration of misusing the border wall funds to restore plants that have been “trampled by illegal immigrants” along the southern border.
Meanwhile, exclusive footage taken by Breitbart News in San Diego, California shows large holes in the border wall — aiding the Mexican drug cartel’s billion-dollar human smuggling and drug trafficking enterprise.
“The materials for the border wall are literally rusting away in southern California,” a source told Breitbart News. The source also noted that about eight miles of California’s border with Mexico remains wide open with no border wall barriers.
In March of 2021, Breitbart News exclusively reported that Biden had been spending about $6 million every day in taxpayer money to not build the border wall. By July, Biden had spent $2 billion to not build the wall, with costs leveling out to about $3 million in taxpayer money wasted every day.
This week, Sens. Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced legislation that would turn over the unused border wall materials, already paid for by taxpayers, to states that could then continue constructing the barrier.