Good news for supporters of Trump’s border wall, and as Don Jr. said in a Wednesday morning tweet, “It’s happening!!!”
It’s happening!!! https://t.co/83M38ofsa0
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) April 10, 2019
Time Magazine reported that the Pentagon announced two military contracts Tuesday worth $976 million to construct a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, marking the first step toward President Donald Trump’s long-promised goal since he declared a national emergency nearly two months ago.
The Army Corps of Engineers awarded a $789 million contract to the Galveston, Texas-based company, SLSCO Ltd., for “border replacement wall construction” in Santa Teresa, N. M., near El Paso, Texas. Barnard Construction Co. Inc., of Bozeman, Mont., was awarded a contract worth $187 million for “design-bid-build construction project for primary pedestrian wall replacement” in Yuma, Ariz. Both projects, announced on the Defense Department website, are slated for completion in fall 2020.
The Department of Defense awarded two military contracts worth almost $1 billion for wall construction on the U.S-Mexico border, the first funds granted since President Donald Trump declared a national emergency.
The Pentagon announced Tuesday it awarded a $789 million contract to Texas-based company, SLSCO Ltd. for “border replacement wall construction” in Santa Teresa, New Mexico, according to a news release from the Department of Defense. Additionally, Barnard Construction Co. Inc, a company based in Montana, was given a $187 million contract for a wall replacement project in Yuma, Arizona.
The New Mexico wall will be 30 feet high and include a five-foot anti-climb plate at the top, and is expected to be completed by October 2020. The Arizona project, expected to be done by September 2020, will include 18-foot bollard fencing with the same five-foot anti-climb plate.
The announcement marks the first contracts doled out to construction companies after Trump declared a national emergency in February, a move that allowed him to allocate billions more in funds for border wall spending. The Pentagon informed Congress in March that it had diverted funds to the Army Corps of Engineers for new border walls, upsetting lawmakers from both parties who demanded the Pentagon seek permission from them before altering its budget.
“You are not asking for our permission,” Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith said to acting Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan during a congressional hearing in March. “Now you understand the result of that likely is that the appropriations committee will no longer give the Pentagon reprogramming authority.”
Lawmakers have warned that they may take away the Pentagon’s authority to transfer funds in the future.
The Tuesday contracts are likely the beginning of more wall construction projects. The Trump administration, which wants to take its immigration policy into a “tougher direction,” is expected to move forward with a series of new enforcement measures, including the expedition of wall construction along the southern border.