Daily Caller: The Trump administration is disputing a new report that claims they’ve built less than 2 miles of border wall with nearly $2 billion in funding.
Bloomberg reported Wednesday that the U.S. government has managed to erect just 1.7 miles of bollard fencing with the $1.57 billion appropriated by Congress for wall construction in FY18. The figure came from a court filing by a lawyer for the U.S. House of Representatives and made its way onto the Drudge Report.
However, members of the administration say the report fails to fully capture the wall construction that is taking place at the southern border.
“The Bloomberg article is wrong,” a senior administration official told The Daily Caller. “The 1.7 miles are part of a 14-mile project specific to the San Diego Sector at a cost of $131 million (FY18 dollars). There are currently over 120 miles of new or replacement wall being constructed, and to say only 1.7 miles is completely false and misleading.”
The official also claimed that all wall construction projects are currently on pace when compared to the timelines of other government construction projects. Acting Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kevin McAleenan said during a Fox News interview in April that the administration is actually moving “aggressively” on wall construction.
“So normally for a federal project of this scope, from the time you get funded to starting, it’s over two years,” McAleenan said. “We’ve already built the [fiscal year] 2017 funding in less than two years. That shows how aggressively we’re moving out on this.”
The Bloomberg article’s headline, “U.S. federal wall funding of US$1.57B yields 1.7 miles of fence,” suggests that it cost nearly $2 billion to build under 2 miles of fence. That is not accurate, and the article itself makes clear that the funding number merely refers to what Congress appropriated for a number of projects last year.
According to a public release from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the $1.375 billion appropriated in 2018 will be used to build approximately 80 miles of “updated and new” border wall.
The 14-mile San Diego project commenced in February 2019 and is on pace to be completed in early 2020. keep reading