President Biden may object to building a wall along the US southern border, but he is currently spending nearly $500,000 of taxpayers’ money to build a barrier around his vacation property. in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
In September 2021, the Department of Homeland Security awarded a $455,000 contract to a construction company in Sussex County, Delaware, to build a fence around the president’s “Summer White House,” according to USAspending.gov, an online database that tracks government spending.
Construction began last September and was expected to be completed by the end of 2021. However, unknown delays have pushed the projected completion date to June 6, 2023 and pushed costs up to $490,324.
Mr Biden’s critics mocked the beach house wall.
“So the walls work at Joe Biden’s beach house but not on the southern border?” asked Representative Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio, wrote on Twitter.
DHS is listed as the primary awarding agency and funding office for the contract, while the US Secret Service is listed as the sub-agency. No public details of the closing have been released.
The Secret Service declined to comment, saying only that it could not discuss the “means, methods or resources used to conduct our protective operations.” A Homeland Security spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.
Mr. Biden is expected to arrive at the Rehoboth Beach home on Saturday, the final leg of a two-week vacation that included stops in Charleston, South Carolina, and his residence in Wilmington, Delaware.
This will be Mr. Biden’s fifth stay this summer at the Rehoboth Beach getaway.
Upon taking office, Mr Biden halted construction of former President Donald Trump’s wall along the southern border. It was part of a relaxed border policy that saw a wave of migrants crossing the border into the United States, according to figures from US Customs and Border Patrol.
Border Patrol agents have made about 1.82 million arrests at the southern border so far this fiscal year, which runs from October to September. This exceeds the record set in the previous financial year, which was 1.66 million in the year ending September 2021.
The number of border arrests, which is an indicator of the number of border crossings that avoid arrest, is about to cross the two million mark for the first time in US history.
Amid criticism for its handling of the border situation, the Biden administration last month approved a plan to close four gaps in the border wall near Yuma, Arizona.