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How much will Calexico RDA pay for Meadows, Highway 98 traffic lights

July 16, 2001|By AARON CLAVERIE, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — Adding traffic lights and turn lanes to the intersection of Highway 98 and Meadows Road will cost about $1.2 million, according to this city's Public Works Department, but how much of that will be paid with Redevelopment Agency funds has yet to be decided.

The decision was carried over from last week's RDA board meeting because city councilmen Javier Alatorre and Gilbert Grijalva objected to paying for the traffic signals and improvements with only RDA money.

In a compromise, the council, seated as the RDA board, decided to bring the matter back Tuesday so City Manager Richard Inman could "find" money in other city accounts to lessen the hit to the RDA.

At Tuesday's City Council meeting, the council will look over Inman's numbers and decide how it wants to pay for the traffic signals and turn lanes. It also will hear staffing requests from city department heads.

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The City Council meets at 6:30 p.m. in City Hall, 608 Heber Ave.

At last week's RDA meeting, Alatorre said the project should be paid for with impact fees collected from developers who have built housing developments, a shopping mall, gas station and the Border Patrol station near that intersection.

City Public Works Director Mariano Martinez told the board there has not been enough collected in fees to cover the cost of the lights and the construction. He said the city has collected $1 million in impact fees.

The city could have collected more if the council had not waived the fees for the Border Patrol and another development that never came to pass, according to Martinez.

He said if the board allocated some or all of the $1.2 million for the lights and turn lanes it would allow Public Works to use some of the $1 million collected in fees for other projects.

Grijalva voted to approve the use of some RDA money on the project but pressed his fellow councilmen to work in the future to use RDA money to fund projects that will stimulate the local economy and create jobs.

Staff Writer Aaron Claverie can be reached at 337-3419.

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