Press Release

Congressman Cuellar Releases Statement on the Termination of Two Laredo Sector Border Wall Contracts

Washington | Dana Youngentob, DC Press Secretary (202-340-9148), July 23, 2021

Laredo, TX—Today, U.S. Representative Henry Cuellar (TX-28) released the following statement in response to an announcement from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that the agency is terminating two Laredo Sector border wall contracts funded by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 appropriations bill and outlined in the executive order (Presidential Proclamation 10142) signed by former President Trump. 

There are more effective ways to meet our security goals, including utilizing advanced technology, increasing personnel, and giving personnel the proper resources on the border. Since the Trump proclamation was issued, I have fought to prevent a wall from being built on our southern border and sent a letter to President Biden asking him to terminate all border wall contracts. As the Vice Chair of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, I have also secured language in appropriations bills to prohibit the use of federal funds in building a border wall,” said Congressman Cuellar. “This announcement is a promising step in our work to halt the remaining construction of the ineffective and wasteful border wall and undo the damage that borderlands have experienced since 2016. However, our work continues. I remain steadfast in my commitment to working with the Biden administration until every border wall contract is terminated and all construction crews leave our border communities.”

According to CBP, construction had not yet started on either of the two Laredo Sector projects and no land acquisition had begun. CBP has separate contracting mechanisms in place to begin the environmental planning process. With the expected level of environmental planning, CBP anticipates this process may take between nine to fifteen months, with contractors being paid for work performed, in accordance with the contract language. 

As part of the DHS Border Wall Plan, pursuant to Presidential Proclamation 10142, CBP has been assessing paused border wall projects and associated construction contracts to move forward with next steps to include: 1) limited work to address life, safety, environmental, or other remediation requirements; and 2) environmental planning, including environmental planning consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) across planned border projects.

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Congressman Henry Cuellar is a senior member of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee. Previously, he served as a Texas State Representative and Texas Secretary of State.  Sign up to receive Congressman Cuellar’s E-mail Newsletters 
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Por favor tomen en cuenta el congresista Cuellar habla inglés y español con fluidez.