WASHINGTON—The House of Representatives passed Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva’s amendment that will direct $4 million within the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC) budget to clarify the responsibility for the maintenance and operation of the International Outfall Interceptor (IOI). The amendment was included in the appropriations bill that passed the House today.
“It’s ridiculous that the people of Nogales and Santa Cruz County live under the constant threat of a dire public health emergency if the IOI bursts,” said Rep. Grijalva. “Clarifying the responsibility of the IOI to the IBWC will mean we can begin necessary repairs to the aging infrastructure with more certainty as we protect the public health of the those who live along the border. For far too long, my constituents have waited for action. It’s time for the Senate take their concerns seriously.”
Prior to the ban on earmarks, Rep. Grijalva worked each year since 2004 to secure funding for the Nogales Wash / Chula Vista and International Outflow Interceptor projects through the appropriations process. He requested $10 million for the project in fiscal year 2009 and $19.7 million in fiscal years 2010 and 2011. His Border Infrastructure and Jobs Act, first introduced in 2011, included an additional authorization of appropriations.
Additionally, Rep. Grijalva filed an amendment to the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 to require the United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission to provide resources for the Nogales Sanitation Project. Rep. Grijalva had requested additional funding for IBWC for the IOI.
Last year he passed an amendment to direct $4 million within the IBWC to clarify the responsibility for maintenance and operation of the IOI. Additionally, he introduced H.R.3204, the Nogales Wastewater Fairness Act to clarify the issues of responsibility of the IOI.