WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — This week, the Pentagon released a list of construction projects that could be on the chopping block due to President Trump’s national emergency declaration to build the border wall.
Funding for military training centers, maintenance projects, water treatment plants and cyber-security facilities are at risk. Defense officials said it’s still unclear which military construction projects won’t receive money but guarantee military housing and barracks projects are no longer on the table.
“Military construction at the border will not come at the expense of our people, our readiness or our modernization” said Patrick Shanahan, Acting Defense Secretary.
The updated list comes as senators raised concerns about dangerous living conditions for military families. Opponents said the money should stay with our military instead of going toward the president’s border barrier.
Texas Republican Congressman Mac Thornberry said Congress shouldn’t be forced to choose between the two.
“Unfortunately that is kind of where we are” said Rep. Mac Thornberry.
The Defense Department is working to narrow down the list of potential cuts. Military officials said projects with an award date before the end of September 2019 won’t be affected. Members of Congress are still taking a serious look at the list to see how it could impact their states.
Molly Reynolds with the Brookings Institute said the final list could impact all states.
“We should expect members of Congress to care about those projects” said Reynolds.
Supporters of using military funds said the plan is to back fill impacted construction projects through the Defense Department’s 2020 budget. But opponents vow to vote against it. Lawmakers are now gearing up for a political battle over military funds on Capitol Hill.
Here is the list of military construction projects that could be impacted: https://www.reed.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Milcon%20Wall%20Project.pdf