Colonia residents may soon start seeing solutions to the drainage problems they experience when it rains heavy. One study may start helping local politicians apply for grants to help these residents.
Most of us have seen the aftermath of a heavy storm that many residents of rural areas in the valley and colonias experience
Residents like Marta Rosales, who has lived in this colonia home in donna, say it’s a frustrating situation anytime a heavy storm passes.
Marta Rosales says, “Every human being wants to feel safe and comfortable in their home, but when it rains hard, there are lots of consequences. There’s flooding, and more mosquitoes start coming out.”
Marta and other colonia residents may soon get the help they desperately need to fix the drainage issues in their neighborhoods. A group of researchers, Halff Associates, Inc. conducted a study in the colonias of the lower parts of the Rio Grande Valley. During the two years they conducted the study, they tried to determine why colonias flood easily and which ones flooded the most.
Raul Garcia, Project Manager for Halff Associates said, “61 of them were in Hidalgo County, 15 were Cameron County, and a couple other ones were in Willacy County. It was kind of a broad range of where they were at, but the majority were in Hidalgo County.”
The researches handed over the results of their study to the Lower RGV Development Council. Members of non-profit organizations like LUPE, who helped with study, are now pushing local politicians to apply for grants to help resolve the drainage problems in the colonias.
Marta Sanchez, Member of LUPE says, “We are already addressing that, and we’ve been addressing it at the commissioner’s court, and we need to push to see what else happens. We need to have the people involved, because they’re the ones that are affected by all this.”
Colonia residents like Marta Rosales just have this to say to local city leaders.
“They need to give us more attention, and listen to us.”
Local non-profit organizations are working on getting the results of the study presented to colonia residents who don’t speak English.