The Trump administration has unveiled plans to extend the border wall with Mexico – with a price tag of $18 billion over a 10-year period, according to published reports. The plan is the first detailed blueprint of how Trump plans to carry out his campaign pledge to build a “big, beautiful wall" bordering Mexico.
U.S. taxpayers will likely foot the bill for the wall, because Mexico leaders have repeatedly said they will not pay for it.
How big is this project?
A proposal by Customs and Border Protection calls for extending the existing barrier by 316 miles by September 2027. When complete, the wall would cover a total of 970 miles or about one-half of the border, the Associated Press reported. Additionally, the project calls for 407 miles of secondary fencing. The information was given to media by an official who did not want to be identified because the plan has not been made public, the report states.
Senators had asked Customs and Border Protection what it would cost to extend the border wall, the official reportedly said.
The exact location of the extended wall was not revealed.
What other projects are planned?
This year, the Trump administration wants to spend $1.6 billion to build or replace 74 miles of border fencing in Texas and California. Plans call for an additional $1.6 billion next year.
The administration is also negotiating a plan that could grant legal status to about 800,000 people who were temporarily protected from deportation under an Obama-era program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the Associated Press reported. Last year, Trump gave Congress a March deadline to fix DACA. The new wall would be part of any new package for DACA recipients.
The Customs and Border Protection plan represents a total of about $33 billion in new border spending. In addition to the $18 billion wall, the plan includes $5.7 billion for technology gear, $1 billion for road construction and maintenance. Also included is $8.5 billion for 5,000 new Border Patrol agents, 2,500 border inspectors and other personnel, the Associated Press reported.