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Border fence legislation sent to White House for approval

[JURIST] The Secure Fence Act of 2006 [PDF text; HR 6061 summary], the second portion of a two-part plan to tackle illegal immigration [JURIST news archive] in the US, was sent to President George Bush Monday for his signature. The bill allows the US Secretary of Homeland Security [official website] to begin using $1.2 billion earmarked for the construction of a border control fence [JURIST news archive] to prevent illegal aliens from entering the US and outlines when and how the building project will get underway. Bush has already signed the first half of the legislation, which creates a $34.8 million fund for tackling immigration issues, including the money to build the 700-mile fence, which will cover areas of the border in California and Arizona. President Bush has 10 days to sign the border fence legislation in order for it to become law.

In a statement [text] Monday, US Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) [official website] and US Speaker of the House J. Dennis Hastert (R-IL) [official website] called the legislation "a key component to keeping America safe and stemming the tide of illegal immigration." US Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) [official website], chairman of the Immigration, Border Security and Citizenship subcommittee [official website], has expressed concern, however, that the government has not budgeted nearly enough to combat the immigration issue, and has lobbied for the use of technological means as well as the fence to prevent illegal immigration. WorldNetDaily has more.

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