Hidalgo County assessing process to fix levee breaches caused by border wall construction
Days after the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court approved a resolution y calling on the Biden administration to fix breaches in the levee that were created by border wall construction in southwestern Hidalgo County, Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez released a statement addressing the levee situation.
In the statement, Cortez said he asked county crews and independent contractors to begin assessing the costs and process of fixing the breaches.
“The federal government does not seem to have the same sense of urgency that I have,” Cortez stated. “Should we find it necessary to use local resources to fix the damage of these federal contractors, it is my intent to seek reimbursement from the federal government of any cost incurred to our taxpayers.”
Border wall construction in the area consisted of flattening several points along the federally owned levee system that acts as a protective barrier to flooding along the Rio Grande, Hidalgo County said in a press release.
When President Joe Biden took office last January, he ordered the immediate halt of border wall construction, leaving the breaches open. Officials said they are concerned the breaches would lead to flooding in the area if they’re not fixed.
“As director of emergency management for Hidalgo County, my sole objective is to keep the residents of Hidalgo County safe and these breaches in the levee system represent a significant threat to the lives and property of tens of thousands of our residents as the June 1 hurricane season approaches,” Cortez said.
Hidalgo County is still communicating with federal officials about their responsibility to fix these breaches, the release stated.