DINBURG, Texas – On July 18, 2017, U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) Rio Grande Valley (RGV) Sector Chief Patrol Agent Manuel Padilla hosted a meeting with Mayors from the Rio Grande Valley to discuss U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) ongoing activities within the RGV area of responsibility (AOR) in support of the President’s Executive Order (EO) 13767 – Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements.
Currently, CBP is only authorized and funded to conduct research for engineering, design, real estate, and environmental planning for 28 miles of levee wall system and 32 miles of border wall system in RGV. CBP is working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to gather data such as geotechnical samples that will inform the planning and decision-making process for the aforementioned levee/border wall system miles.
CBP considers USBP’s operational requirements for impedance and denial, constructability, environmental/cultural/geographical considerations, and input from stakeholders to make informed decisions that provide USBP agents with the appropriate resources to effectively perform their priority homeland security mission. Funding to construct the approximately 60 miles is included in the President’s proposed Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 budget. CBP will not engage private landowners or begin construction of these operational requirements until funding is made available.
Concurrently, CBP is working with the USACE to execute planning activities for projects approved under the FY17 enacted budget. In RGV, this includes installing 35 gates along the gaps in the existing pedestrian fence and constructing new patrol and access roads at locations that will be determined by USBP’s operational needs. The FY17 enacted budget also funds and authorizes CBP to replace existing pedestrian and vehicle fence with steel bollard wall in the San Diego, El Centro, and El Paso Sector AORs.