Trump Administration Begins Probing Private Landowners Along Border Over Wall Construction

The Trump administration has begun asking non-federal landholders along the U.S.-Mexico border for permission to survey their properties to assess the details of building a wall on them, ramping up the timeline for the White House’s signature issue.

Customs and Border Protection and the Army Corps of Engineers started sending letters in recent weeks to obtain “rights of entry for survey” for properties in Texas’ Rio Grande Valley. If consent is provided, the agencies will conduct environmental assessments, land surveys, appraisals and other activities to enable the construction of a “contiguous, physical wall,” according to information CPB provided to Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.).

The assessments at this stage will only take place if the landowner agrees to grant CBP and ACE access. In some cases, the owners are already giving permission. The city council of Donna, Texas, approved CBP’s request during a recent meeting, according to The Monitora newspaper in the Rio Grande Valley.

Read more at Government Executive.

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