Opinion: Yet another 'commitment' to a sewage fix doesn't cut it. San Diego needs results. Now.

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Has there been a breakthrough in getting the federal government to finally address the Tijuana sewage nightmare that’s flooded South County beaches and estuaries with billions of gallons of untreated waste for more than a decade? That was the intended takeaway, no doubt, of areleased by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office on Sept. 1 headlined “Federal government commits to fixing Tijuana River sewage cisis in San Diego County.” It declared, “Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S.

But the huzzahs and thanks that the governor may have expected from the many San Diegans appalled by years of beach closures and sick surfers, Navy SEALs and Border Patrol agents weren’t forthcoming. Instead, the collective response amounted to “Just great — another fresh set of promises to get things done someday.

This critique should not be read as faulting the group of local elected officials who are increasingly outspoken on this issue, in particular Imperial Beach Mayorand Rep. Scott Peters, D-San Diego. They’re trying and they’re speaking truth to power. But former Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina, in a Friday interview with an editorial writer, said there is only so much that can be done by area politicians when facing an ossified bureaucratic mindset. “It’s like having a surgical patient come in with all these complications. and [doctors] telling the patient about a long-term health plan, but not addressing what’s killing him,” he said. “No one seems concerned about fixing the problem, they’re more worried about the process.”California Sen.

The days of “always promising us things in the future” — Dedina’s shorthand description of the federal response to San Diego’s nightmare — must come to an end. Please, please, please — no more “commitments” to do the right thing. Instead, it’s time to

 

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