By Barbara Zaragoza
… and Chula Vista City Council Member Mike Diaz Grossly Exaggerates Crime Rates Involving ‘Illegals’
Jose Cerda of The Star News called out a CV council member in the Chula Vista Star News explaining that:
City councilmember Mike Diaz stated in a Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017, Star-News article entitled: “An Offer of Sanctuary, The Welcome Mat or Neither,” to reporter Robert Moreno, that: “In the United States about 47,000 citizens die from illegal aliens driving while intoxicated under alcohol and other kind of drugs.” Councilmember Diaz continues, “If you look at that there is a problem with people who are here illegally who are felons, creating crimes.” Adding, “If you can convince me that a sanctuary city is going to make our citizens safer, I’m all in it but there is no statistics that prove that.” (See more.)
But according to Cerda’s research, in 2014 there were 9,967 victims of alcohol or drug related driving impairment, not the 47,000 Diaz alleges. In addition, Cerda writes that the academic studies he’s found conclude there is no evidence of higher crime rates in cities with sanctuary policies. See article here.
Community Asks Hector Gastelum To Resign After Anti-Immigrant Tweets
Last week, Otay Water District board member Hector Gastelum was found blasting tweets that called Muslim immigrants “sub human” and “scum.” I posted some of his many tweets and the Union Tribune did a story.
Then on Wednesday, March 1, more than a dozen people attended the Otay Water District board meeting and called for Gastelum’s resignation. ABC 10 News had the story this week.
Massive Sewage Spill
143 million gallons of raw Tijuana sewage spilled across the border, creating a foul odor and contaminating beaches. The largest spill in over a decade, the Union Tribune reported that the toxic discharge happened around February 6th while officials repaired a major sewer pipe.
Dedina explained, “Remember there is a difference between storm-related runoff and the deliberate dumping of raw sewage into the Tijuana when the river is flowing… In recent years we have documented illegal sewage flows and then got them shut down even when authorities denied they were occurring….”
Councilmember Alvarez also got involved. He and Dedina reached out to federal officials on both sides of the border, demanding that those responsible be held accountable.
To boot — Border Patrol agents reported black water pouring through the U.S.-Mexico border at Goat Canyon in the Tijuana River Valley. (San Diego Reader)
Lower Otay Dam Spilled Over, Sweetwater Dam To Get Repairs
- After Monday’s downpour, the Lower Otay Dam spilled over. It’s the first time that’s happened in six years. See the video & story at KPBS.
- And — the Sweetwater Dam will get a $7.5 million dollar upgrade. Construction should begin in 2018. (ABC 10 News)
Chula Vista Deserves Park Space, Not More Development
Chula Vista only has one really large regional park — Rohr — spanning 60 acres. Since 1993 another regional park spanning 70 acres has been planned for the Otay Ranch community. However, the community group Crossroads II reported this week that a developer wants to build on half of what was supposed to be the regional park.
Crossroads II, explains: “The developer wants 35 acres of the planned park for his residential development, and in turn, offers 96 acres for a park in the Otay River bottom,i.e., the south bank of the river just east of Heritage Road across from the amphitheater.”
Crossroads explains that the Regional park, as planned in 1993, would be centrally located in the area of suburban density where residents can enjoy it.
If moved, however, the regional park will not only be further away from residents, but also will be closer to the Otay landfill as well as the auto wreckers & recyclers — an area not highly regarded for it’s clean air and land.
- Kinsey Morlan at Voice of San Diego rounded up “The Most Memorable Acts of Protest Art at the Border.”
- Save Our Heritage Organization (SOHO) listed preservationist work in Tijuana and the U.S.-Mexico border region.
- Brook Binkowski in her VOSD Border Report tells of 45 year old Guadalupe Olives Valencia who committed suicide along the Tijuana Bridge after being deported. Suicide among those who’ve been separated from their families is an under-reported problem.
- U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced that it will start awarding construction contracts for the wall by mid-April. So far, details are scant. (Times of San Diego)
- The San Diego Reader uncovered that, “”In September 2009, we found that [Customs and Border Protection] had not assessed [tactical infrastructure’s] impact on border security operations or mission goals and had not measured the effectiveness of [tactical infrastructure]. Specifically, we found that [Customs and Border Protection] had not accounted for the impact of its investment in border fencing and infrastructure on border security.” Translation: CBP can’t seem to quantify how effective border building is in curbing undocumented immigrants from crossing the border.
Bonita, From Farming Community To Urbanized Town
And finally, the San Diego Reader featured the unincorporated city of Bonita, which has tried to remain defiant to the urbanizing world around them.