Representative Mike Levin Calls for Federal Funding to Support Solana Beach-Encinitas Coastal Shore Protection Project

July 31, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) called on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide additional federal funding for the Planning, Engineering, and Design (PED) of the Solana Beach-Encinitas Coastal Shore Protection Project. The Solana Beach-Encinitas Coastal Shore Protection project was authorized by Congress in 2016. Its primary purpose is to stabilize tall bluffs that erode due to high-energy storm swells, posing threats to life, safety, property, and critical infrastructure including Southern California’s main passenger and freight rail corridor. The non-federal sponsor has the entire cost of Planning, Engineering & Design (PED) in hand, but is awaiting initial federal funding.

In a letter to Lieutenant General Todd T. Semonite, Commanding General and Chief of Engineers, Levin wrote, “I would not be making this request of you if the need were not so urgent.  For more than 17 years, the cities of Solana Beach and Encinitas have been active partners in the development of this project, providing the Corps not only with funding, but also biweekly participation in Project Delivery Team meetings.”

Levin added, “Over that time, injuries and, regrettably, deaths have occurred.  Despite a series of delays and plan formulation hurdles, they have put their faith in their collaboration with the Corps. They deserve to have the project design phase of this study completed without further delay.”

Representative Levin has advocated tirelessly for local communities facing dangerous coastal erosion, storm surges, and sea level rise. Last month, Representative Levin wrote to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works requesting additional federal funding necessary to complete the Oceanside, California Special Shoreline Study, which would help address beach erosion resulting from Camp Pendleton Harbor construction.

See below for Representative Levin’s full letter to Lieutenant General Todd T. Semonite:

Lieutenant General Todd T. Semonite

Commanding General and Chief of Engineers

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

441 G Street, N.W.

Washington, DC 20314-1000

Dear General Semonite:

The Solana Beach-Encinitas Coastal Shore Protection project was authorized by Congress in 2016.  Its primary purpose is to stabilize tall bluffs that erode due to high-energy storm swells, posing threats to life, safety, property, and critical infrastructure including Southern California’s main passenger and freight rail corridor.  The non-Federal sponsor has the entire cost of Planning, Engineering & Design (PED) in hand, but is awaiting initial Federal funding.  I ask for your intervention to use the available funding opportunity I describe below to get the PED process started this year.

The study’s economics must be updated, which is expected to cost $300,000.  In addition, the anticipated Federal share of the first-year cost of PED is $400,000.  The FY19 Energy & Water Development Appropriations Conference Report language states that updating economic analyses and economic impact studies are eligible to receive monies from the “additional funding” provided in the bill.  Should there be available all or any part of the $700,000 from FY19 Work Plan General Investigations, I ask for your help in getting this funding allocated to this project.  In addition, I ask that you also look to available General Investigations funds from the FY18 Supplemental Appropriations Bill as another source of funding since California is qualified to receive funds from that bill. 

I would not be making this request of you if the need were not so urgent.  For more than 17 years, the cities of Solana Beach and Encinitas have been active partners in the development of this project, providing the Corps not only with funding, but also biweekly participation in Project Delivery Team meetings.  Over that time, injuries and, regrettably, deaths have occurred.  Despite a series of delays and plan formulation hurdles, they have put their faith in their collaboration with the Corps. They deserve to have the project design phase of this study completed without further delay.

I appreciate your consideration of this request and would be happy to discuss any questions you may have.

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