U.S. Government Builds $600K Homes for Border Agents
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency (CBP), which is under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, spent about $15 million to build 21 homes in Ajo, Arizona for border agents.
The numbers crunch down to about $600,000 for each house, even though similar homes, on average, in Ajo usually sell for $70, 598, noted The Arizona Republic.
The CBP also paid more than $2 million for 20 trailer homes and land leases.
Amazingly, the CBP refuses to tell the public how many of the homes and trailers are occupied or how much border agents pay to rent them.
During a town hall on Tuesday in Tucson, Arizona, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said: "It's disgraceful... people should be fired," noted USA Today.
"We're going to ask for some real answers, and follow up on the tremendous costs. If we don't get a response, we'll ask the Inspector General to take a thorough look at that, and I hope some of my colleagues will join me. I'd bet that this situation is not unique," added Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.).
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Rep. Ron Barber (D-Ariz.) were also outraged and demanded answers from the CBP.
In a written statement, CBP said it "chose to build housing because quality, affordable housing was not available in the area."
However, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly 30 percent of the existing houses in Ajo were vacant between 2007 and 2011.