Planning for President Donald Trump's U.S.-Mexico border wall is still under way, while other happenings in Trump's administration are getting more coverage, according to the Washington Examiner.
Officials are looking into multiple proposals, site studies are ongoing, and money is available to work on the project, according to Byron York, writing in the Examiner.
The work on the wall is under the auspices of Trump's Jan. 25 executive order, which put forth the Trump administration policy for "the immediate construction of a physical wall," the Examiner report said.
The order also cited the Secure Fence Act from 2006 that called for fencing and barriers for up to 700 miles of the 1,954-mile border. In 2015, the Department of Homeland Security reported that 1,300 miles of the 1,954 miles of the border have no coverage. Only 2 percent of the border has the amount of fencing that the Secure Fence Act requires, the Examiner said.
"The executive order calls on the authority in the Secure Fence Act for us to begin immediately," a senior administration official said, according to the Examiner.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection has gotten more than 100 proposals for full-scale prototypes of wall designs, the Examiner report said.
"We are evaluating what started out as a solicitation to industry and request for proposals—18 to 30 feet high, impenetrable, hard-to-scale, the correct aesthetics," the official told the Examiner. "We've tried to capture the intent (of Trump's order) in the requests for proposals, and those proposals are being evaluated now."
The intention is not to build a wall across the entire length of the border. Planners said some areas would not have an actual wall. Other areas might have fencing or some other barrier, according to York's Examiner report.
Officials say that about 700 miles of the border would need to be covered. The official said planners are looking at the locations of most illegal border crossings. The executive order to "prevent all entries" is being taken very seriously, according to the administration officials in the Examiner's report.
The 2017 budget resolution provided "in the neighborhood of $900 million" for proposals and prototypes, the official said. He added, however, that the $900 million figure would provide upgrades to current fencing and engineering, design, and real estate work.
NBC News issued a progress report on the wall on Tuesday. No cost estimate exists yet, because a design has not been chosen, according to NBC.
A major issue for the building of the wall is that private citizens and businesses own land along much of the border, according to NBC's report.
"Are people concerned about the federal government coming in and trying to grab their land? Yes, they are," Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas) told NBC.
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