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House Appropriations approves Calexico POE project start funds

The wait on federal funding needed to start Phase 1 work on the Calexico Port of Entry expansion is coming to an end. Wednesday, June 25th, the House Appropriations COmmittee approved the plan to pay the GSA 98,062,000 dollars in a general government spending bill.

Efficient border wait times have not lowered border crowd traffic problems at the San Diego POE near the Imperial Valley during the ten years the border entry and exit expansion has been planned. Work on adding 10 northbound POV inspection lanes can start after Congress gives the go ahead on the fiscal year 2014-15 appropriations.

Construction workers hired onto the border team for the Phase 1 jobs will build a headhouse. The site needs slope grading work to level the land for the border facilities construction work.

Additional northbound lanes will not be built until the GSA secures funding for Phase 2, the pedestrian crossing build phase.

Increased entries and exits in the border lands stay in local plans to improve economic opportunities in the markets in the southeast San Diego region. Tie ups at the region's east POE hold back job growth. San Diego Representative Juan Vargas (D) has been trying to get the expansion and reconfiguration project funded and done to put an end to years the region gives up trading and work opportunities on the border lands. “It is an honor to work with my colleagues from both sides of the aisle, as well as the region’s community leaders and business organizations to make the Calexico Port of Entry a priority before Congress,” said Rep. Juan Vargas.

“Today’s approval brings us one step closer to improving our border’s efficiency and safety, creating jobs, and increasing economic growth in the region.”

California legislator TOni Atkins (D-San DIego) helped build up the strength in the call on COngress to approve the border funding. ASking for federal money Governor Jerry Brown, Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, and ASsembly Speaker John Perez count on to open up California border opportunities.

Opportunities for binational enterprises at the San Ysidro entry port will also go up as corssing traffic grows. The San Ysidro expansion project underway at the western U.S.-Mexico border in the San Diego region will have another year of federal money on the way. There is 216,828,000 dollars for the project in the appropriations bill.

WOrk securing the dusty border lands to keep the enterprise and trade routes full of the right binational crowds stays a federal order for the fiscal year. Border officials, with appropriations bill law enforcement funding in hand, will have to prove a commitment to enforcing the law. The Imperial County Board of Supervisors supported funding an effort to secure the border valley businesses need secure to guarantee efficient crossings.

This is an On The Watch Take.