Feds say Ducey broke law with shipping containers at border

The state’s unauthorized placement of shipping containers to fill gaps along the Arizona-Mexico border wall near Yuma by Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey violates federal law, according to a letter sent to state officials by the Bureau of Reclamation.

The letter calls for the removal of the current containers and for any placement of new containers to stop.

The bureau wanted to avoid interference with a recently awarded federal contract to close two border wall gaps near the Morelos Damnear Yuma, the letter states.

US Customs and Border Protection was awarded a contract to close the two gaps, which are on Bureau of Reclamation land, and anticipates awarding another contract for the closure of two more gaps in the area, the letter states.

Migrants cross the border into Yuma on Aug.  23, 2022, despite the shipping container wall.

Migrants cross the border into Yuma on Aug. 23, 2022, despite the shipping container wall.

In July, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas authorized CBP to close the four gaps in the border wall near the Morelos Dam to address operational impacts and immediate life and safety risks.

“The unauthorized placement of those containers constitutes a violation of federal law and is a trespass against the United States,” the letter states. “That trespass is harming federal lands and resources and impeding Reclamation’s ability to perform its mission.”

The letter was signed Thursday and sent by Jacklynn Gould, regional director of the Bureau of Reclamation’s Lower Colorado Basin, to Allen Clark, director of the Arizona Division of Emergency Management, and Tim Roemer, director of the Arizona Department of Homeland Security.

Ducey spokesperson CJ Karamargin said state officials are waiting to see a contract before acting to remove any containers and that the office is reviewing the letter. In the past, Ducey’s office has said it would “happily” remove the shipping containers if and when the federal government decides to

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