Mayorkas, DHS Get Massive Funding Boost In House’s Newest Spending Bill

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Arjun Singh Contributor
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The House of Representatives’ second consolidated spending bill for fiscal year 2024 includes significant increases in funding for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and to the office of its secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas.

The 2024 fiscal year began on Oct. 1, 2023 — by which the appropriations process was supposed to be completed — but political disagreements in Congress led to the enactment of four continuing resolutions to avoid a government shutdown and preserve funding at the previous year’s levels. After Congress completely passed its first permanent spending bill for the year on March 8, the House on Thursday released its second permanent bill, a consolidation of six constituent bills, which includes an increase of $19 million to the Office of the Secretary over fiscal year 2023 levels, for a total of $404 million until Sept. 30, 2024. (RELATED: ‘It’s An Embarrassment’: House GOP Divided On Homeland Security Funding Which Could Doom Proposal To Avoid Shutdown)

The DHS provisions are among the most controversial aspects of the bill and prompted significant negotiations that delayed its release until an agreement was reached on Tuesday. The bill was released at 2:48 a.m. on Thursday, which is less than 48 hours before funding expires on Friday at 11:59 p.m.

Read a summary of the bill here:

Summary of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2024 by Daily Caller News Foundation on Scribd

That agreement is embodied in Part C of the bill, known as the “Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act.”

It is unclear whether the increase will allow for greater compensation to be paid to Mayorkas, who was impeached by the House of Representatives on Feb. 13 for allegedly neglecting his responsibilities to enforce immigration law. “I can’t imagine giving all this money and giving all these authorities to a man we just voted to impeach. It sends a mixed message,” Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The bill will allocate $496 million to recruit 22,000 agents for the U.S. Border Patrol, a measure demanded by many Republicans consistent with their efforts to enact border security measures and allocate $125 million for overtime pay to current agents. It would also allocate $3.45 billion to increase the number of detention beds for individuals in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody by 7,500, to a total of 41,500 beds — a measure designed to enable greater enforcement capacity for removing unlawfully present foreign nationals.

The bill would, furthermore, allocate $283.5 million to fund infrastructure upgrades along the United States’ international border with Mexico, with a separate $348 million allocated for the detection of fentanyl using sensors at ports of entry.

“It’s not perfect. It’s not undoing the Biden policies, per se. It is starting to invest in detention facilities and judges to adjudicate some of the illegals coming across the border. It’s setting the stage, financially, for the next administration,” Republican Rep. Mike Garcia of California told the DCNF.

The 1,012-page bill would fund a majority of executive branch departments — Defense, State, the Treasury, Homeland Security, Labor, Education and Health and Human Services — as well as all independent agencies of the government, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission and Federal Election Commission, and other organs, including the White House, the federal judiciary and congressional offices.

DHS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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