Organizers behind a privately funded barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border said Thursday, May 30, they have cleared a hurdle with city officials in Sunland Park, New Mexico. Construction resumed after We Build the Wall obtained a pair of permits from local officials, who had temporarily shut them down.
Tommy Fisher, president and CEO of Fisher Industries in charge of construction described the wall to a local KVIA reporter. “This just isn’t a wall, or it’s just not a fence, it’s a border security system that will protect our southern border.”
City building inspectors determined that an application for a construction permit was incomplete and the city sent a cease-and-desist order, which prompted thousands of phone calls from citizens in support of the project. Apparently, Fisher Industries had erected about 1,500 feet of fencing along private property over the weekend without going through Sunland Park’s review process. However, once the city completed its review, the necessary permits were issued.
Kris Kobach legal counsel for We Build The Wall shared with KVIA the advantages of speed and agility of private nongovernment construction. “One of the most impressive things that’s impressive to me is the speed with which we mobilized. The federal government can do impressive things with its huge resources. We don’t have the resources they do, but we do have agility and speed and determination, and that’s what I hope you see on display when you look at this wall.”
According to Kobach, the group plans to sign an agreement allowing U.S. border authorities to patrol the private property without having to hand over ownership to federal officials. We Build the Wall founder Brian Kolfage said he chose this first site because of a willing landowner, the proximity to a busy smuggling corridor, and videos from a militia group documenting large groups of illegals crossing the border here.
Includes reporting from the Associated Press and KVIA-TV