Pentagon shifting $1.5 billion to border wall construction

Military
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FILE – In this Jan. 9, 2019 file photo, construction crews install new border wall sections seen from Tijuana, Mexico. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., says the Pentagon is planning to tap $1 billion in leftover funds from military pay and pensions accounts to help President Donald Trump pay for his long-sought border wall. Durbin told […]

The Pentagon is shifting $1.5 billion in funds originally targeted for support of the Afghan security forces and other projects to help pay for construction of nearly 80 miles of wall at the U.S.-Mexican border, officials said Friday.

Congress was notified of the move Friday. It follows the Pentagon’s decision in March to transfer $1 billion from Army personnel budget accounts to support wall construction.

Some lawmakers have been highly critical of the Pentagon shifting money not originally authorized for border security.

A Pentagon spokesman said the $1.5 billion would be used to “undertake fence replacement” in and around Tucson, Arizona, and El Centro, Texas.

In all, the Pentagon is expected to shift about $6.1 billion to help build a border wall, including about $3.6 billion from military construction projects, some of which will be delayed.

The Pentagon has not yet announced which projects will be delayed in order to free up those funds.

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