Federal Agencies to Meet June 5 to Address Cross-border Sewage Flows

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Customs and Border Protection will hold a stakeholder meeting at the Coronado Community Center on June 5 at the request of the City to address contamination in the Tijuana River Valley that is forcing beach closures in San Diego County.

The City has been working closely with EPA and other federal partners on the matter since early 2018. The meeting will focus on efforts to address sewage flows in the Tijuana and New rivers and identify technical and financial solutions on both sides of the border. Tijuana’s deteriorating sewer system regularly discharges contaminants into the watershed that ends at the Southern California coast.

“The City of Coronado is committed to finding long-term, sustainable solutions to this problem that jeopardizes quality of life for countless residents and visitors in the region,” Mayor Richard Bailey said. “We are working with our federal partners and Congress to identify and fund projects that make a lasting difference.”

Also included on the June 5 meeting agenda are the International Boundary and Water Commission, San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board, County of San Diego, and North American Development Bank.

“This is an opportunity to bring all parties together to determine what infrastructure is going to be the most effective and sustainable to ensure that this is no longer the detrimental issue it has been,” Bailey said. “The City of Coronado, with our coalition partners, looks forward to swiftly resolving this issue together.”

Through its advocacy and education efforts, the City of Coronado has raised national awareness of the problem among legislators, political appointees and career staff at federal agencies. These efforts, along with those of the County of San Diego, resulted in $25 million in congressional funding for sewage system projects along the border in the current fiscal year, with more proposed for fiscal year 2020.

The June 5 stakeholder meeting will be held at the Community Center, Nautilus Room, 1845 Strand Way, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

 

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Originally from upstate New York, Dani Schwartz has lived in Coronado since 1996. She is thrilled to call Coronado home and raise her two children here. In her free time enjoys hitting the gym, reading, and walking her dog around the “island.”Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: manager@coronadotimes.com