DONNA, Texas – An internal U.S. Department of Homeland Security document to the President outlines an update to his executive orders on border security.
It covers everything from the border wall to expanded deportation efforts.
The 90-day progress report to the President obtained by the Washington Post is dated for release two weeks from now, and it details the latest developments on the fronts of immigration and border protection.
In it, it calls for the construction of 34 miles of a barrier in the Texas Rio Grande Valley, considered a high priority area where there’s currently about 54 miles of fencing. It also calls for the repair of 14 miles of fence in San Diego, California.
But what will this barrier look like?
The report states that “in light of this diverse topography, there can be no one-size-fits-all border barrier solution.”
So far, what DHS said has worked has been steel fencing and levee wall solutions.
Texas Senator John Cornyn weighed in saying that he wouldn’t vote for a concrete border wall from coast to coast.
“In Hidalgo County, for example, where the levee wall serves a dual purpose and it’s seen as a win-win proposition. But I think technology is going to do the lion share,” he said.
Apart from a barrier and technology, President Trump ordered the hiring of 5,000 additional Border Patrol agents. Over the past few years, CBP has tried streamlining their hiring process. But to get these additional agents ‘pronto’ the agency is considering the removal of polygraph exams and some fitness tests.
In order to expand the government’s net and remove undocumented immigrants, DHS is reaching out to state and local police to participate in a program that would train them to enforce federal immigration laws.
But where will detainees be held at?
There are a couple of empty, rapid response facilities in South Texas that can hold 500 people at a time and become operational in less than 72 hours. The report calls for additional 22,000-bed spaces and for more immigration hearings where immigration judges could either be assigned to the border or deal with cases remotely via a web camera.
Much of what the report recommends, requires billions from congress. At a time when illegal border crossings are at an all-time low, some congressmen have reservations on how much money to appropriate for the President’s executive orders.