FEMA was just the beginning: NBC News reported Thursday that in addition to previously reported transfers out of that agency, the Department of Homeland Security this summer internally transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement $1.8 million from the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, $29 million from the U.S. Coast Guard and more than $34 million “from several TSA programs,” among other transfers totaling $169 million.
The transfers benefitted ICE’s detention and removal operations, NBC News reported, and documents given to Congress specifically mentioned ICE’s going millions over-budget in its effort to expand the capacity of its detention centers.
DHS also transferred, per NBC News, $33 million from other programs within ICE to the agency’s detention and removal operations.
The network cited documents sent to Congress from DHS, the parent agency housing ICE and many other aspects of the nation’s security apparatus.
DHS can transfer money internally with congressional approval, the network noted. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VM) told the Associated Press that Republican subcommittee chairs signed off on the transfers, without any Democratic support.
While DHS spokespeople have claimed the FEMA money did not come from its disaster relief coffers, the documents sent to Congress indicated it came from FEMA’s “operations and support” funds.