ICE wants extra $1 billion to fund deportations under Trump

Pauline Gross
September 16, 2018

The transfer and reprogramming request shows that money has been pulled from the Coast Guard, from TSA aviation security, from other parts of ICE, actually, as well as from FEMA.

The Trump administration shifted almost $10 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency earlier this year to fund the detention and deportation immigrants, according to documents obtained by USA Today.

Merkley's communications director Ray Zaccaro slammed the President for "stripping money from FEMA to pay for locking up families at the border" in a statement issued Wednesday.

At a Wednesday morning briefing, FEMA Administrator Jeff Byard said the agency has "plenty of resources both monetary, staff and commodities" to respond to approaching Hurricane Florence, which is set to reach the Carolinas on Thursday evening.

Merkely said he believes the budgeting reallocation happened in response to the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy, which was rolled out earlier this year.

'This is a sorry attempt to push a false agenda at a time when the administration is focused on assisting millions on the East Coast facing a catastrophic disaster, ' Houlton wrote. Watch above, via MSNBC.

The transfer of funds earmarked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency was called a "scandal" by Democratic Sen.

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Calls for help kept coming in as the wind picked up and the tide arrived, said city public information officer Colleen Roberts. But Florence's forward movement had slowed to a crawl, and it piled on the rain in a siege that could go on all weekend long.

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Three feet of storm surge moving onto the coastline will result in higher tides and higher water moving onshore. However, experts remained unsure midday Wednesday where the storm would make landfall in the Carolinas.

Some of the $10 million was coming from FEMA categories including "Response and Recovery", "Mitigation" and "Preparedness and Protection" - categories that, while sounding as if they would involve hurricane response, do not. One of the people responsible for this transfer is Kansas 3rd District Rep. Kevin Yoder, who chairs the House subcommittee that oversees the Department of Homeland Security budget. The disaster relief funding left untouched by the transfer, Whelan said, covers post-storm assistance and the rebuilding of public structures, while "Response and Recovery" money tapped for the transfer pays for plans, logistics, supply-chain management and after-action reports that seek to improve on previous seasons, said Whelan, who is also a former official with the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development. "FEMA officials have already stated that no money was transferred from disaster accounts, despite the misleading and distractive narrative being pushed".

News of the budget transfer comes several weeks after FEMA acknowledged staffing shortages and logistical challenges in responding to Hurricane Maria previous year in Puerto Rico, where aging infrastructure and island terrain complicated relief efforts.

Maddow reported that the $9.8 million would help ICE with border security, including building new detention centers, even while admitting that DHS said that the transfer of funds from one agency operating budget to another agency is governed by law. They do support his assertion that it has "Response and Recovery right on it".

While DHS spokespeople have claimed the FEMA money did not come from its disaster relief coffers, the documents sent to Congress indicated it came from FEMA's "operations and support" funds.

"This is yet another example of the Trump administration's outrageously misplaced homeland security priorities", said Rep. Bennie Thompson of MS, the top Democrat on the House Committee on Homeland Security. The Category 4 storm is expected to make landfall in North Carolina Thursday and may be the costliest hurricane in USA history.

After months without power or clean water and an official death count of almost 3,000 dead. He also used the occasion to trumpet as an "incredible, unsung success" his administration's response to Hurricane Maria, which caused almost 3,000 deaths on Puerto Rico, a US territory already badly damaged by Hurricane Irma weeks earlier.

Other reports by GizPress

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