SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The San Diego County Sheriff's Department incurred nearly $900,000 in added costs and the San Diego Police Department incurred more than a quarter-million dollars in added costs to patrol and secure the Otay Mesa border area during the monthlong construction of eight border wall prototypes by would-be government contractors, it was reported today.
The added costs to the city and county, mostly to pay overtime wages to deputies and officers, added up to $1,175,840 for security at the border wall project site, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. That was on top of the more than $1.26 million the agencies spent on regular wages for officers and deputies.
The Union-Tribune obtained the financial information through a California Public Records Act request. It showed that the sheriff's department spent $764,278 on overtime wages between Sep. 26 and Oct. 26, more than $118,000 on chain-link fences, barriers and signs and more than $15,000 on unidentified services, supplies and an environmental consultant.
In total, the sheriff's department paid $715,000 in regular wages and $897,942 in overtime wages and other extra costs, for a total of more than $1.6 million, according to the newspaper. The police department $548,446 in regular wages and $277,898 in overtime, services and supplies, bringing the city's total cost to $826,345.
The Department of Homeland Security warned local law enforcement before the project began of the possibility of large-scale protests that could turn violent. But there were no demonstrations during the monthlong construction.
A county spokeswoman told the Union-Tribune the costs were worth it and that county officials ``are convinced that this uniformed presence'' and temporary fencing eliminated any planned protest encampments.
The border wall project on federal land in Otay Mesa was designed to give federal officials a chance to test several different prototypes built by prospective government contractors seeking to build President Donald Trump's promised barrier.
City officials told the Union-Tribune it was unlikely the city would be reimbursed by the federal government, while the county spokeswoman could not tell the newspaper whether the county would be reimbursed.
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