The Trump administration is preparing to acquire privately owned land along the Mexico border to build new sections of the border wall. Thursday reports said President Trump’s team is preparing the paperwork to start buying privately held land as soon as this week.
Administration officials said they may use the Declaration of Taking Act to speed up legal proceedings. In the past, Washington had to pay landowners and battle legal challenges for access to their land to build border infrastructure. This time, the president may use emergency powers to expedite wall construction.
This comes amid efforts to increase security along the U.S.-Mexico border. Acting CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan said there is significant progress being made to secure the border, despite Congress and the lower courts fighting their efforts.
During a Thursday press conference, Morgan noted that the Trump administration’s strategies are successfully sending a message to Mexico’s drug cartels and other criminal organizations contributing to the national security crisis at the border.
The commissioner reported that the U.S. is continuing to see an overall decline in migrant apprehensions and an increase in drug seizures.
“The month of October has continued with that trend, reaching a 14 percent decline compared to September — with just over 42,000 apprehensions,” stated Morgan. “Last month on the southwest border, CBP seized more than 47,000 pounds of drugs — a 50 percent increase from this time last year.”
He added though there is progress, there still needs to be more wall constructed in order to put the cartels permanently out of business.