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Border wall money diverted from Pentagon being returned; environmental issues addressed along wall

Border Wall
Posted at 4:08 PM, Apr 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-01 10:18:21-04

SAN DIEGO — The Biden administration will return billions of dollars to the Pentagon that were diverted by former President Donald Trump to build large sections of wall at the U.S.-Mexico border.

On his first days in office, President Joe Biden ordered a pause on all wall construction. This week his administration canceled remaining contracts.

The Department of Defense said they would use the remaining money diverted from their budget for approved military construction projects, which was the funding's initial purpose, that had been delayed.

About $5.8 billion for the wall was appropriated by Congress for the work, according to the Associated Press, the remaining more than $10 billion was diverted from the Defense and Treasury departments. It's not immediately clear how much money is left unspent.

As part of the administration's review of the wall and border area, they announced Friday they will launch two new projects to address issues caused by the quick construction of the new border wall.

One is to address soil erosion from a 14-mile stretch of barrier construction by the Trump administration near San Diego.

The other will fill holes left by construction in the Rio Grande Valley levee system in Texas. Texas lawmakers from both parties, including Senator Ted Cruz, have called on the Biden administration to address the holes in the federal levee system ahead of hurricane season to help prevent flooding.