WE ARE BUILDING THE FIRST NEW BORDER WALL IN A DECADE.
DHS is committed to building wall and building wall quickly. We are not replacing short, outdated and ineffective wall with similar wall.
Instead, under this President we are building a wall that is 30-feet high.
FACT: Prior to President Trump taking office, we have never built wall that high.
Once funding was provided, DHS began construction of border wall exceptionally quickly, in some locations in as little as nine months from funding to building– a process that commonly takes two years or more in other parts of Government. By the end of FY 2019, DHS expects to have construction completed or underway for more than 120 miles in the areas it’s most needed by the U.S. Border Patrol. The pace of construction has picked up as initial limiting factors like land acquisition and funding have been addressed.
In FY 2017 Congress provided DHS $292 million to build 40 miles of steel bollard wall in San Diego, El Centro and El Paso Sectors, Border Patrol’s highest priority locations in place of outdated, operationally ineffective barrier. DHS received its FY17 funding for border wall construction in May 2017. DHS awarded the first contract against that funding in November 2017 and began construction three months later in February 2018. As of November 21, 2018, CBP has constructed more than 31 of the 40 miles with the remaining 9 miles scheduled for completion by early 2019:
- El Centro Project (2.25 miles): Completed.
- El Paso Project (20 miles): Completed
- San Diego Primary Project (14 miles): Completion anticipated in May 2019.
- El Paso Project (4 miles): Construction started in September.
How effective is this new border wall?
On Sunday when a violent mob of 1,000 people stormed our Southern border, we found the newly constructed portions of the wall to be very effective. In the area of the breach, a group of people tore a hole in the old landing mat fence constructed decades ago and pushed across the border. U.S. Border Patrol agents who responded to the area ultimately dispersed the crowd, which had become assaultive, and apprehended several individuals.
All of the individuals were either apprehended or retreated into Mexico. That evening, the fence was repaired. There were no breaches along the newly constructed border wall areas.
What’s next you might ask?
When combined with the funds provided in FY 2017 and FY 2018, if funded at $5B in FY 2019 DHS expects to construct more than 330 miles of border wall in the U.S. Border Patrol’s highest priority locations across the Southwest border.
The Bottom Line:
When it comes to stopping drugs and illegal aliens across our borders, border walls have proven to be extremely effective. Border security relies on a combination of border infrastructure, technology, personnel and partnerships with law enforcement at the state, local, tribal, and federal level. For example, when we have installed wall in Yuma Sector, we have seen border apprehensions decrease by 90 percent. In San Diego we saw on Sunday that dilapidated, decades old barriers are not sufficient for today’s threat and need to be removed so new – up to 30 foot wall sections can be completed.