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Gateway owners agree on taxes

November 21, 2001|By LAURA MITCHELL, Staff Writer

The Gateway of the Americas development cleared another hurdle Tuesday when the project's landowners voted to agree on taxes that would support development at the site.

The Gateway project hopes to attract industrial development at the Calexico East Port of Entry area and could bring thousands of jobs to the county.

Gateway landowners include the Los Alamos Land Co. of San Diego and the local Menvielle and Rice family members.

Land ownership is unevenly divided between family members and investors. Each vote was weighed according to how much land the individual owned.

"I'm glad we passed another milestone," County Executive Officer Ann Capela said. "This project is a main focus for economic development in the county."


The vote allows the county to put the major pieces, such as fire protection, water and sewer service, in place so it can start issuing building permits, Capela said.

"Certainly we can start rolling the paperwork," she said.

The Gateway project is funded by landowner investment, Mello-Roos funding and grant money, Capela said. Little county money went into the project, she said.

Capela said the county cannot make a gift of public funds. The county's main investment has been with employee time, she said.

The money approved by the vote will go toward funding the project's sewer and water plants and maintaining utilities.

How the landowners voted:

· 93.95 percent voted yes on water and sewer rates;

· 87.89 percent approved fees to offset the impact of traffic;

· 74.88 percent voted in favor of taxes to maintain and operate the Gateway County Services Area, which will run the development's utilities.

>> Staff Writer Laura Mitchell can be reached at 337-3452 or

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