The Biden administration has approved $950 million in contracts to repair and upgrade parts of the existing border wall in Arizona, California, and Texas.
The Department of Homeland Security awarded the contracts for repair work and “system attribute installation,” including the installation of cameras, roads, and detection technology.
The money comes from Trump-era congressional appropriations, and none of it is awarded for additional wall construction.
The administration has previously tried to divert wall-related funding elsewhere but must spend the appropriated money on its intended purpose unless Congress intervenes.
“The construction project reported today was appropriated during the prior administration in 2019 and the law requires the government to use these funds for this purpose, which we announced earlier this year.”
“We have repeatedly asked Congress to rescind this money but it has not done so and we are compelled to follow the law,” DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas stated.
“This Administration believes that effective border security requires a smarter and more comprehensive approach, including state-of the-art border surveillance technology and modernized ports of entry.”
“We need Congress to give us the funds to implement these proven tools.”
The administration shut down all additional wall construction upon entering office but recently cited an “acute and immediate need” to build 20 miles of wall in South Texas using FY 2019 appropriations.
Republicans have called for wall construction to resume, but no Democratic support has been received for such legislation.