Advertisement

Our Opinion: A time to push

March 29, 2001

Whether you agree with the way in which the beef plant project has seemed to speed through several different government processes, one thing most people can agree with is the facility will be a positive for the Imperial Valley. It has the potential to create much-needed jobs and to rekindle the agricultural industry in the Imperial Valley.

For that reason we commend the Imperial Irrigation District Board of Directors for taking an important step to move the project forward. That step was allowing staff to obtain the equipment and materials to build a power substation to serve the plant and any other developments in the eastern section of Brawley.

What makes that decision significant is IID is still working out the details of an agreement with B.P. Ventures, the owners of the plant. If IID waited to finalize that agreement, it likely would not be able to obtain the materials and build the substation in time for the opening of the beef plant. That simply cannot happen when so much is at stake.

Advertisement

Many in the cattle industry are dependent upon the beef plant opening Oct. 1. That is the day the first shipment of cattle is to arrive for processing. The power service, at least the majority of it, must be ready to go by that day. Without power the plant will not operate and a lot of people who have invested greatly in the beef plant will lose a great deal of money.

In an ideal world would IID first have a contract before moving on the project? Yes. But things are definitely not ideal. Time is running out. The plant is well into its construction and October is not that far away. We are confident IID and B.P. Ventures will reach a contractual agreement soon because there simply is no choice and both parties likely realize that.

The beef plant project has been pushed rather quickly through government processes. Perhaps that was necessary. As long as the project has taken all the necessary steps and has met all the requirements, that is what matters.

Now we can only hope the project will do what its creators have said it will do. A lot of local government agencies have bent over backward to help this project.

It is now time for B.P. Ventures to deliver those 600 jobs. We want to see agriculture get a much-needed boost. We want the beef plant to be as big a success as government leaders throughout the Imperial Valley seem to think it will be.

Imperial Valley Press Online Articles
|
|
|