Santa Cruz Good Times

Thursday
Feb 11th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Supervisor Tony Campos

Why is it necessary to build a new levee for the Pajaro River? What has been your involvement with the 100-Year Flood Protection Project?

The 100-Year Flood Protection project is intended to correct a levee system built on the Pajaro River in 1949 that has been declared inadequate (and proven inadequate as evidenced by the floods of 1955, 1958, 1995, 1997, and 1998) in providing 100-year flood protection for the area.

As a member of the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors representing the Fourth District (South County), I am concerned by the property and economic damage another flood will bring to our community. The senior communities of Bay Village and Pajaro Village are adjacent to the levee—as is some of the most bountiful agricultural land in the country. To disregard the threat of another flood is irresponsible. I have participated in meetings with all stakeholders, including holding community meetings to ensure residents are informed of the status of this project. The safety of the residents is important to me.

I have traveled with other local officials to Sacramento to meet with California Department of Water Resources officials and with state legislators to garner support for our project and pursue state grant funding. In addition, we have traveled to Washington D.C. to meet with the United States Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) officials and federal legislators to ensure our project is given adequate attention.

The ACOE is the federal sponsor for the levee project; the local sponsors are Monterey and Santa Cruz counties. The local sponsors, along with the City of Watsonville, provide the ACOE with a variety of local factual information and input to aid in the planning, design, and construction of an adequate levee project. Over the years, the ACOE has studied approximately 19 design project alternatives and is currently approaching a critical stage of designating one of the project alternatives a National Economic Development Project (NEDP) project.

I and other Santa Cruz County officials have been assertively negotiating with the ACOE and I have enlisted the help of federal legislators to ensure that the project design designated as the NED is also a Locally Preferred Project (LPP), one that has the local stakeholder consensus and adequately protects critical sections of Santa Cruz County. The project must provide 100-year flood protection to urban areas, protect rural water wells, and protect the prime farmland that serves as our community’s economic base.


What is your opinion of the current proposed plan?

The current draft plan for the project (the NED) would not provide any additional flooding protection; much less reach the goal of providing 100-year protection for critical sections of the Santa Cruz County Project area. In fact the Corps’ NED would actually make some of our areas more vulnerable to flooding by building 100-year protection levees on the Monterey County side of the river. In addition, there is the concern that the project levees will not be improved to new federal standards for such construction without protection on the Santa Cruz County side in certain sections of the river. The Corps’ NED would provide 100-year protection to very deserving communities in Monterey County, while leaving approximately 8-year protection for critical sections of Santa Cruz County. These actions are not only unacceptable to the local sponsors, but they fail to fulfill the goals of 100-year flood protection for both sponsors. The locally preferred project (LPP) would provide 100-year flood protection to the entire project area and is admittedly more expensive than the Corps’ presumed NED. However, any cost savings would be quickly lost when the all-but-certain 100-year flood event occurs and lays waste to our rich agricultural lands—resulting in soil contamination, job losses, potential public health hazards, and the exposure to continuous and expensive litigation for Santa Cruz County.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Making Dreams

Coen brothers salute vintage Hollywood in sly comedy ‘Hail, Caesar!’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Pub Watch

Mega gastro pub-in-progress at the Old Sash Mill, plus the best pasta dish downtown

 

How do you know love is real?

When you feel the groove in your heart and you’re inspired to dance. Becca Bing, Boulder Creek, Teacher

 

Temple of Umami

Watsonville’s Miyuki is homestyle cooking, Japanese-style

 

How would you stop people from littering?

Teach them from the time that they’re small that it’s not an appropriate behavior. Juliet Jones, Santa Cruz, Claims Adjuster