(The Center Square) – The federal government will likely start filling in gaps of the border wall in the Yuma sector shortly after Arizona takes down its storage container barriers.
In agreeing to remove the state-erected barrier as part of a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, federal government officials again confirmed to Gov. Doug Ducey’s office that they are moving forward with a plan to replace it.
A stipulation filed on Wednesday indicates that state-contracted workers removing the barriers aren’t to damage federal lands or interfere with government activity, including “commencement of engineered barrier construction by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in and around the Morelos Dam area,” the court document states.
The governor’s office said that the move from the United States is long overdue.
“Good. Better late than never. It’s about time,” Ducey spokesman C.J. Karamargin told The Center Square Wednesday evening. He added that the governor’s office has been told federally-sponsored construction of a barrier would begin “very soon.”
The storage containers went up in August after demands from regional officials and community members to take action on the influx of migrants.
This agreement corroborates with prior announcements from the federal government, which said construction would begin in early 2023 on “the closure of four gaps” in the Morelos Dam area, according to a letter from CBP in October.
In the Yuma sector alone, there were 310,094 migrant encounters in the fiscal year 2022, according to CBP data.
Representatives at the Center for Biological Diversity, who intended to challenge Ducey’s wall construction in court, weren’t immediately available for comment.