Arizona is suing the federal government after they were ordered to remove the storage containers placed along open areas along the southern border.
The storage containers were placed along the gaps in the Yuma sector in August to quickly close gaps, but the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has ordered them to remove the containers.
“The unauthorized placement of those containers constitutes a violation of federal law and is a trespass against the United States,” the bureau said in a letter on Friday, according to 12 News. “That trespass is harming federal lands and resources and impeding Reclamation’s ability to perform its mission.”
This comes amid the ongoing border crisis, in which Yuma is a hub for the influx of people coming from around the world to enter the United States.
Republican Gov. Doug Ducey is the plaintiff in the case, whereas Chief of the United States Forest Service Randy Moore, Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Camille Calimlim Toutonm, and Secretary of Agriculture Thomas Vilsack are named as defendants in their official capacity.
“Our border communities are overwhelmed by illegal activity as a result of the Biden administration’s failure to secure the southern border,” Ducey said in a statement.
“Arizona is taking action to protest on behalf of our citizens. With this lawsuit, we’re pushing back against efforts by federal bureaucrats to reverse the progress we’ve made. The safety and security of Arizona and its citizens must not be ignored. Arizona is going to do the job that Joe Biden refuses to do — secure the border in any way we can. We’re not backing down,” Ducey added.
“Now is not the time to hold or spend precious resources on replacing a barrier that already works,” Yuma County Supervisor Jonathan Lines said in a statement.
The lawsuit argues that the state was left with no other choice but to take action at the border:
An unprecedented crisis has arisen in the State of Arizona that is the creation of the federal government. Countless migrants are crossing unsecured areas of the border illegally. The result is a mix of drug, crime, and humanitarian issues the State has never experienced at such a significant magnitude, resulting in the State bearing the burden of the federal government’s inaction. Arizona has pleaded with the federal government to act many times, but such pleas have been either ignored, dismissed, or unreasonably delayed. Rather than cooperate and work together with Arizona, the federal government has taken a bureaucratic and adversarial role.
As of August 2022, there have been 284,078 migrant encounters in the fiscal year 2022 in the Yuma sector alone, according to United States Customs and Border Protection data.