Speed Reads

War over the wall

DHS will bypass environmental regulations when building border wall in San Diego

In order to quickly get a wall up along the border between the United States and Mexico, the Department of Homeland Security has permission to bypass environmental regulations in the San Diego area, the agency said Tuesday.

The agency issued a waiver that authorizes it to bypass "a variety of environmental, natural resource, and land management laws," the DHS said. The focus will be on a 15-mile stretch of wall that starts at the Pacific Ocean, with the DHS saying it had to issue the waiver because of the need to "immediately plan, design, and construct a physical wall along the southern border." Despite the waiver, the DHS said it "remains committed to environmental stewardship with respect to these projects."

The San Diego City Council's Budget Committee is considering a resolution in opposition of President Trump's executive order to build the wall, calling the affected area "among the most unique, diverse, and beautiful regions in the world" and saying the wall plans are "offensive and damaging symbols of fear and division that will increase tensions with Mexico," City News Service reports. If the proposal passes, companies involved with designing, building, or financing the structure will be identified by the city council, and it will express its intent to divest from those entities.