Congressmen and Women Vargas, Davis, Peters, Ruiz and Grijalva Call on President to Fund Calexico Port of Entry Project

Washington, DC - Rep. Juan Vargas (CA-51) was joined by Rep. Susan Davis (CA-53), Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52), Rep. Raul Ruiz (CA-36), and Rep. Raul Grijalva (AZ-3) in sending a letter to the President of the United States urging him to include funding for Phase 1 of the Calexico West Land Port of Entry (LPOE) reconfiguration and expansion project in his FY 2015 Budget Request.

“Modernizing the Calexico West LPOE is essential to improving the economy of the entire Southwest region and the nation by strengthening our trade, commerce, and security along the US-Mexico border,” said Rep. Juan Vargas.  “Inadequate and inefficient infrastructure is costing California millions of dollars and hindering job growth.  Updating the Calexico LPOE is integral to the region’s success.  The project will encourage economic growth and create jobs that are critical to the region.”

Calexico’s LPOE, located in Imperial County, is a pedestrian and vehicle inspection facility constructed in 1974.  It serves more than 16,000 privately-owned vehicles (POVs) and 20,000 pedestrian crossings on a daily basis.  However, the existing facilities are severely undersized to accommodate existing traffic and obsolete in terms of inspection officer safety and border security.  In a 2007 study, the Imperial Valley Association of Governments estimated that delays due to border wait times cost California businesses an estimated $436 million and 5,639 jobs.

The reconfiguration and expansion project will be constructed in two phases.  Phase 1 will consist of ten northbound POV inspection lanes, a headhouse, and necessary sitework.  Phase 2 will include additional sitework, a new pedestrian processing facility, administrative offices, five southbound POV inspection lanes, and six additional northbound POV inspection lanes.  The estimated project costs are $100 million for construction of Phase 1 and $275 million for construction of Phase 2.

“Investing in the Calexico West LPOE project will improve domestic supply chains, strengthen our national security, and facilitate economic growth, not only for the region, but for the nation as a whole,” said Rep. Vargas.  “I am optimistic that the President will prioritize this critical project and include Phase 1 funding in his FY 2015 Budget Request.”

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