Arizona Gov. Ducey approves record $500 million-plus on border security protection for state

Ducey argue spending is necessary because the Biden administration has failed to address border "crisis"

Updated: July 1, 2022 - 12:11pm

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Arizona GOP Gov. Doug Ducey has signed legislation that will ensure over $550 million in spending to protect his state from problems related to immigration at the U.S.-Mexico border, which he blames on the Biden administration.

"Inaction by President Joe Biden has led to the worst border crisis in over 20 years," Ducey said in a letter Thursday to Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs. "With this investment, we are giving our law enforcement professionals another critical resource they need to successfully do their jobs."

The legislation combined with investments from the coming fiscal year's budget dedicates $564 million toward the border security and will pay for such cost as a physical barrier, public safety staffing shortages and upgrading law enforcement equipment to target criminal activity, according to the letter. 

Ducey also said in the letter the amount the state is spending on the effort was a "record amount." 

State GOP Rep. John Kavanagh, who sponsored the legislation, says record number of illegal border-crossers has overwhelmed law enforcement and Border Patrol.

"This is a reasonable investment in Arizona’s safety and security," he said.

Immigration arrests along the U.S. southern border rose in May to the highest levels recorded, according to the latest U.S. Customs and Border Protection figures, obtained by The Washington Post.

CBP made 239,416 arrests along the Mexico border in May, a 2% increase from April. The agency is on pace to exceed 2 million detentions during fiscal 2022, which ends in September, after recording a record 1.73 million in the previous year, the newspaper also reports.