U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is set to run out of money by this fall unless the Department of Homeland Security scrapes together funding before then.
The immigration surge at the southern border has driven up costs, and ICE will run out funding before October, Axios reported.
ICE has been a point of controversy for many years since its role is to arrest and detain undocumented immigrants.
Throughout Biden’s presidency, ICE has been spending more than it ever has as it tries to react to the border crisis and immigration surge of the past year and half.
But now, ICE has an estimated $345 million shortfall for the current fiscal year.
In order to keep funding the agency, DHS will have to move around funds and take from other agencies, sources told Axios.
About $100 million is expected to come from the Coast Guard Budget, for instance.
However, $80 million could be found by moving around existing ICE funds internally.
ICE has had a lot to handle as millions of immigrants have been flowing into the U.S.
In 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection had more than 2 million migrant encounters, according to Border Report. That does not count the many other immigrants that crossed the border undetected. In the first six months of 2022, the numbers have continued to increase.
This broke the record that was previously set in April.
As the number of immigrants crossing the border rises, so does the cost of operations for all agencies dealing with the issue, like ICE.
In the past 19 years, since the creation of DHS in 2003, the federal government has spent about $333 billion on agencies that carry out immigration enforcement, the American Immigration Council reported.
But as former ICE Chief of Staff Jon Feere told the Daily Caller News Foundation, there is just not enough money, particularly since ICE and DHS have been shifting operations and restructuring things.
Feere blamed the Biden administration, explaining that it has funneled tax-payers’ money into “alternatives to detention,” rather than just normal detention and immigration enforcement.
“Instead of seeking enforcement resources, the Biden administration is putting more money into so-called alternatives to setention, but more specifically into what they call ‘case management’ and ‘wraparound services,’ which means endless taxpayer handouts for illegal aliens,” Feere said.
“There’s no money for this, so the Biden administration is transferring taxpayer dollars from other parts of DHS like the U.S. Coast Guard and FEMA. Biden’s political appointees are transforming ICE from a law enforcement agency into a social services agency without Congress’s permission,” Feere added.
Axios reported that reprogramming did indeed take congressional offices by surprise.
DHS has to notify Congress about reprogramming like this, though it does not need legislative approval.
So now that everyone is becoming aware of the reprogramming that has taken place and that ICE is almost out of money, DHS, under the Biden administration, will have to find a way to come up with millions of dollars.
“ICE does need a significant increase in enforcement resources commensurate with Biden’s influx of illegal immigration, and Congress must fund thousands more officers and detention beds, for starters,” Feere said. “The immigration courts will inevitably determine that many of these asylum claims are phony, and ICE simply doesn’t have the resources to carry out the forthcoming court ordered removals.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.