YUMA, Ariz. – Today, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad F. Wolf was joined by United States Senator Martha McSally, Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls, U.S. Border Patrol Yuma Sector Chief Patrol Agent Anthony Porvaznik, and Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot to announce the Federal government has completed construction on the first 100 miles of new border wall system along the southwest border.
“As of today, we have completed the first 100 miles of new border wall system on the southwest border. New wall has been constructed in every border state from California to Texas. This is a milestone for our entire country, and this would not have been possible without the President’s steadfast determination and leadership,” said Acting Secretary Wolf. “The new border wall system is an undeniable impediment to human smugglers, drug traffickers, and other criminals who have exploited our lack of effective border infrastructure to smuggle drugs, people and illegal contraband into our country. The President listened to his operators on the front lines and is fulfilling his promise to secure the border.”
Wolf continued: “The decision out of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is a huge victory. It upholds the rule of law and our ability to use military construction funds to address the ongoing crisis at the border.”
"Arizonans live every day with the challenges and opportunities that come with being a border state,” said Senator Martha McSally. “Yuma has been an example of how a border wall system makes a difference—along with dedicated agents, intelligence driven operations, roads, and technology. These additional barriers and a new port of entry will improve security and the economy for our community, state, and country."
“The wall is a critical component in border security measures for Yuma’s border region for the safety of our community, for proficient border crossing operations, and for economic stability,” said Mayor Doug Nicholls. “An efficiently-operated, safe southern border region is pivotal to the economy as a whole, inclusive of Yuma’s $3 billion agriculture industry. We experienced a dramatic reduction in incursions when the 2006 wall was constructed, which decreased illegal crossings by 95%. Fourteen years later with changes in immigration patterns, we need to keep safety and efficiency a mainstay.”
The portion of the wall completed in the Yuma Sector is part of a high-tech system that combines a physical barrier with technology and real-time surveillance. In Fiscal Year 2019, Yuma Sector was the third busiest sector in the nation with almost 70,000 apprehensions between ports of entry. Nearly 25% of its 105 miles of land border now has new border wall. This new wall construction is combined with all-weather roads, lighting, enforcement cameras, and other related enforcement technology to help U.S. Customs and Border Protection continue to secure our southern border.
“The commemoration of the 100th border wall mile is monumental for Yuma Sector,” said Yuma Sector Chief Patrol Agent Anthony J. Porvaznik. “Our agents do a tremendous job on the front lines enforcing law and order on the border with all available resources. Now, they are equipped with a 30-foot wall which impedes and denies attempts to enter our country illegally, assault our agents, or smuggle dangerous narcotics and contraband into the United States."
“In Arizona, border security isn’t a talking point or faraway concern; it’s an issue our residents live with every day,” said Governor Doug Ducey. “We know that barriers make a difference and aid our law enforcement along the border. We’re grateful to have an administration that has prioritized border security and listened to the needs of states.”