The White Home has requested the U.S. Military Corps of Engineers to look into tasks accepted in a invoice offering catastrophe aid for Puerto Rico, Texas, California and Florida to see the place funding could possibly be diverted to construct a wall alongside the border with Mexico, in accordance with a congressional aide acquainted the discussions.

Virtually three weeks right into a partial authorities shutdown, President Donald Trump has signaled he might search a manner out of the deadlock over funding a wall by declaring a nationwide emergency on the border with Mexico. Federal regulation permits the president to halt navy development tasks and divert these funds for an emergency.

On Thursday, White Home officers requested the U.S. Military Corps of Engineers to comb a spending invoice handed final yr that offered catastrophe aid for Puerto Rico, Texas, California and Florida to see which tasks could possibly be delayed and the funds diverted to the wall. These tasks, which have been accepted for development however for which funding hasn’t but been obligated, embody flood-control efforts to forestall injury from future pure disasters in states not too long ago harm by them.

“This cash is meant for use on tasks to defend People from pure disasters and rebuild communities impacted by them,” Rep. Anthony Brown, D-Md., tweeted on Thursday. “We’ll have fewer assets to guard locations like Puerto Rico and Houston, TX from being destroyed.”

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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