(USA Features) The Pentagon has canceled the remaining border wall projects funded through the defense agency during former President Donald Trump’s administration and has returned the funds to other DoD line items, officials said Friday.
“The Department of Defense is proceeding with canceling all border barrier construction projects paid for with funds originally intended for other military missions and functions such as schools for military children, overseas military construction projects in partner nations, and the National Guard and Reserve equipment account,” Jamal Brown, deputy Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.
Also, the Department of Homeland Security said it will be repairing flood barriers in Texas as well as “dangerous” soil erosion in San Diego that officials claim occurred as a result of wall construction.
At the same time, DHS officials are still reviewing “extensive problems created by the prior administration’s border wall construction,” it said in a statement.
But, DHS said, the wall will not be expanded in relation to repair projects.
“Border wall construction under the previous administration tied up more than $14 billion in taxpayer funds, shortchanged our military, and diverted attention away from genuine security challenges, like human traffickers,” the White House said in a statement.
“Rushed and haphazard wall construction also resulted in serious life, safety, and environmental issues,” the administration added.
On his first day in office, President Joe Biden issued an executive order pausing border wall construction.
During his 2016 campaign, Trump made the construction of a border wall a policy priority, which a number of political analysts have speculated aided his successful election.
Border Patrol and other immigration officials credited the wall with helping to dramatically reduce illegal border crossings.
In late October days before the 2020 election, DHS announced that the border wall system was “effective” at disrupting “criminals” and “smugglers.”