(NewsNation) — Arizona’s governor is refusing to back down in a fight over barriers at the southern border, rejecting calls by the Biden administration to remove shipping containers and stop construction of any additional barriers.
One part of the project has been in place for months now in Yuma, and another is underway in Cochise County, more than 250 miles east of Yuma. Gov. Doug Ducey says construction of the shipping container border barrier will continue.
Containers were placed along the border with Mexico in the Coronado National Forest on Monday, with plans for a barrier to be constructed with 300 shipping containers. The 10-mile stretch will cost $95 million, paid for by state funds earmarked for border security.
The federal government is now demanding the containers be removed — after being silent for weeks — arguing there are already plans and contracts in place to fill the holes along the border wall in the coming months. Arizona, however, isn’t stopping the excavators and forklifts.
Ducey is suing the administration over the pushback, asking a judge to determine whether Arizona or the federal government controls land within 60 feet of the border with Mexico. Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels said he supports the governor’s move.
“We need to do something, because right now that is an open entry into the United States,” Dannels said.
The Bureau of Reclamation did not respond to a request for comment. The federal agency previously told Arizona officials the containers violated U.S. law.
The Center for Biological Diversity, which also raised an objection about the impact on animal migration, filed a notice of intent to sue Ducey’s administration if the shipping containers in Cochise County are not removed.