WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52), Congresswoman Susan Davis (CA-53), and Congressman Juan Vargas (CA-51) announced that funds for Phase III of the San Ysidro Land Port of Entry infrastructure projects have been allocated in the recently announced federal omnibus spending bill. The advocacy of freshman members Peters and Vargas, combined with ongoing pressure from Davis and California Senators Feinstein and Boxer, helped push the Appropriations Committees to provide funds for San Ysidro in the package.
“Finishing the border crossing at San Ysidro is the top priority for our regional business community, and securing this funding was my personal infrastructure funding priority for this congress,” Rep. Peters said. “I feel a great personal satisfaction that, working together, we will improve efficiency, reduce wait times, and help create jobs and economic activity in our region and our state.”
“Adding more lanes at the border crossing has been something San Diegans and local business leaders have long told me is a top priority for our region,” said Rep Davis. “I’m pleased the current delegation was able to build on our prior efforts to make additional lanes a reality.”
“Securing funding for the San Ysidro Port of Entry project has been a top regional priority for me,” Rep. Vargas said. “The improvements that will be made to our border infrastructure will boost our economy and generate jobs, while also increasing border efficiency and security. I applaud the bipartisan effort made by the San Diego Congressional delegation, and U.S. Senators Feinstein and Boxer, to ensure that this vital project received funding.”
Funding for the project has long been the top regional priority for the San Diego Regional Association of Governments (SANDAG) and the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. Reps. Peters, Davis, and Vargas held an initial press conference in April highlighting their push for San Ysidro funding in April, which followed their letter to President Obama asking that he include the funding in his budget request.
In addition to $128.3 million in direct Fiscal Year 2014 appropriations, the project will receive $97.7 million in reprogrammed funds from prior Government Service Agency (GSA) resources. The total, $226 million, is the estimated cost necessary to complete the project. According to SANDAG, San Ysidro is the world’s busiest international land crossing, handling more than 11 million passenger vehicles, 68,000 buses, and 8 million pedestrians in 2012. SANDAG also estimates that delays and inefficiency at the border costs the region $7.2 billion in lost output and 62,000 jobs.
Congressman Peters serves the 52nd District of California which covers much of central San Diego County including Poway, Coronado, and large portions of the City of San Diego. Congresswoman Susan Davis serves the 53rd District of California which covers parts of Chula Vista, La Mesa, Spring Valley, parts of El Cajon, and the central portions of the City of San Diego. Congressman Juan Vargas serves the 51st District of California which covers Imperial County and the southern portions of San Diego County.