PHOENIX — The federal government sued Gov. Doug Ducey and the state in federal court on Wednesday regarding the shipping container barrier along the Arizona-Mexico border.
News of the complaint being filed in U.S. District Court comes after the Department of Agriculture and United States Department of Interior reportedly made claims to Arizona officials about taking legal action.
On Tuesday, Ducey told the Department of Justice in a letter about the pending federal complaint that Arizona “stands ready to cooperate with the federal government on the construction of a border wall and always has been.”
The note also says that construction of the container barrier “has ceased” since previous discussions between the entities.
“Arizona’s border barrier was always intended to be a temporary solution until the federal government erects a permanent solution," Ducey said in the letter. “Arizona agencies and contractors stand ready to assist in the removal of the barriers, but the federal government owes it to Arizonans and all Americans to release a timeline on when the construction will begin and details about how it will secure the border while construction is underway.”
In his letter, he asked that Arizona officials be put into direct contact with the manager of the border wall project.
According to the complaint, federal officials are asking the court to order Arizona to stop construction and have the containers removed in Cochise County, the Associated Press reported.
Read the letter below:
A project was launched to fill the gaps by Ducey on August 12.
Previously on July 28, the Biden administration authorized the completion of the Trump-funded U.S.-Mexico border wall in an open area of southern Arizona near Yuma that has become one of the busiest corridors for illegal crossings.
Santa Cruz County Sheriff David Hathaway recently threatened action against contractors hired by Governor Doug Ducey’s office who were filling in the gaps of the border wall with shipping containers.
Officials from Coronado National Forest also warned visitors to the area to stay clear of the southern border, citing "safety hazards" and "unauthorized armed security personnel."