A Texas nonprofit secured a $530 million federal contract with the agency responsible for housing unaccompanied migrant minors after hiring a former border and Biden transition team official, Axios reported Tuesday.
Family Endeavors hired a former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) official and Biden transition team advisor, Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, months before they were awarded the contract, Axios reported. Lorenzen-Strait acted as a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) policy and staffing advisor to the Biden transition team, and advised companies about federal procurement practices through his own consulting firm.
The contract is the second-largest awarded from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Administration for Children and Families (ACF) which is responsible for the care of unaccompanied migrant children, according to Axios. The contract is 12 times greater than Family Endeavor’s most recently reported annual operating budget of $43 million in 2018.
Some 18,700 unaccompanied migrant minors are in HHS custody and over 2,900 remain in Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody as of Tuesday, according to HHS. CBP officials encountered over 172,000 migrants including nearly 19,000 unaccompanied minors in March, according to the agency.
Number of unaccompanied minors in CBP facilities dropped below 3,000. There were more than 5K toward the end of March pic.twitter.com/XRpnEWd4b2
— Stef Kight (@StefWKight) April 13, 2021
Family Endeavors has received $255 million of the current contract, Axios reported. The award is the organization’s first prime contract with HHS, though they provided staffing for other HHS shelters in 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2019, according to Axios.
Family Endeavors was also awarded an $87 million DHS contract to oversee an ICE operation to procure 1,200 hotel beds intended for migrant families in Arizona and Texas in March, the Washington Examiner reported. The organization hired Lorenzen-Strait on Jan. 20 as its senior director for migrant services and federal affairs.
The ACF awarded over $320 million to the for-profit organization Rapid Deployment and more than $719 million to Deployed Resources last month in response to the continued increase of migrants arriving at the southern border and facilities reaching capacity, Axios reported. (RELATED: Biden HHS Spending $60 Million Each Week To House Migrant Children)
Neither HHS or Family Endeavors responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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