Federal Gov’t Spending Millions in Storage Fees for ‘Extra Steel’ That Could Be Used to Extend SW Border Fence

Arizona Border Fence

This Oct. 30, 2011 file photo shows the border fence stretching west of Nogales, Ariz. into the Coronado National Forest. An Arizona lawmaker, Republican state Sen. Steve Smith, who is leading an effort to build additional fences near the state’s border with Mexico through donations said he expects to begin construction on more barriers some time next year. (AP Photo/The Arizona Republic, Michael Chow, File)

(CNSNews.com) – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has in storage about 27,000 tons of “extra steel” that could be used to extend the estimated 650 miles of fencing mandated by Congress along the approximately 2,000-mile long southwest border, according to the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General (DHS IG).
An IG report released in November notes that in January 2008, the CBP — a DHS component — awarded an unnamed “prime contractor” a “Supply and Supply Chain Management (SSCM) task order” for storing and purchasing steel to support the construction of fence along hundreds of miles of the U.S.-Mexico border by Dec. 31, 2008 as part of the Secure Border Initiative (SBI) that was mandated by Congress.
Although the report does not name the prime contractor who was awarded the SSCM task order, the CBP reported that it “teamed up with The Boeing Company” of Chicago, Ill. to “support and facilitate the successful execution” of all fence building operations under the SSCM project mentioned in the IG report.
The steel purchased under the task order was used to build about 299 miles of the estimated 651 miles of fence that have been erected so far along the U.S.-Mexico border as requested by Congress. Most of the fence is single-layered, including 352 miles of fence aimed at preventing people from crossing the border illegally, known as a primary pedestrian fence, and 299 miles of fence aimed at preventing vehicle crossings known as a vehicle fence.
After using about 117,000 tons of steel to build the 299 miles of fence from a total of 145,000 tons purchased under the task order, “27,557 tons of extra steel, with a value of about $44 million, remained in storage,” said the DHS IG report.
Read More: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/federal-govt-spending-millions-storage-fees-extra-steel-could-be-used-extend-sw-border

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