Texas is getting closer to awarding a massive contract to construct over 700 miles of border wall fencing. According to The Texas Facilities Commission, the $1 billion contract could be awarded as early as next week
The Washington Examiner reports:
The commission selected engineering firm Michael Baker International of Pennsylvania and design firm Huitt-Zollars of Dallas to team up on the project. The commissioners must vote on the decision before the contract for a program manager can be awarded, and the final monetary amount has not yet been determined. The program manager will handle the budget and determine where to build.
Four total companies expressed interest in the contract.
Both firms have helped with hundreds of miles of completed border wall projects under previous presidential administrations. This is the first time a state has opted to install a barrier at an international border, as it is typically considered the federal government’s responsibility.
Rep. Greg Bonnen, a Republican who represents a Houston suburb, introduced a bill that passed the state Legislature in August to fund Gov. Greg Abbott’s proposals to deter illegal immigration. More than half of the $1.8 billion bill goes toward the border wall and fencing. A Washington Examiner analysis of existing border wall projects revealed just 150 miles of the 1,250 miles of land Texas shares with Mexico have a substantive barrier, leaving the state responsible for roughly 1,100 miles of fencing.
The 733 miles of land where the border wall will be constructed is owned by residents who allowed for the border wall construction, alleviating the risk of lawsuits.