Gov't Notifies Residents about Interest in Property at La Lomita
MISSION – The chapel at La Lomita in Mission has endured the elements along the border for more than 150 years.
Its next ordeal may come as the government eyes part of its property for border wall construction.
In a letter to the city of Mission, U.S. Customs and Border Protection explained its intentions to access properties within Mission.
CBP requested "written permission" to access the areas, to do “environmental assessments, property surveys, appraisals and any other such work which may be necessary and incidental to the government's assessment of the property for possible acquisition in support of U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) construction of border infrastructure."
Those border infrastructure efforts include "border walls, lighting and roads," according to Loren Flossman, the CBP representative who wrote the request.
Looking at an overhead map of the proposed project area, it appears the government wants access to part of the La Lomita property, owned by the Catholic Church.
Brenda Riojas, spokesperson for the Diocese of Brownsville, said the government is requesting access to La Lomita and the nearby Juan Diego Academy property.
She could not confirm the request had to do with border wall construction.
But the letter to the city of Mission clearly states CBP's desires to build in the project area.
The city of Mission hasn't taken any action on the government's request so far.
Riojas says the Catholic Church is waiting to learn more about the plans.