California Signs Toll Revenue Sharing Agreement with Mexico

By: Sharjeel Sohaib

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Nov 1, 2022

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The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) and a delegation of regional leaders signed a new toll revenue-sharing agreement on 24th October 2022 with Mexico in Mexico City to promote the development of the Otay Mesa East Port of Entry at the San Diego-Tijuana border,

“Mexico is one of California’s most important international partners, and we share a deep bond that stretches back generations,” said Governor Newsom. “Our state is a national leader when it comes to international cooperation and smart, clean infrastructure investments that are critical to the U.S. supply chain. At a time when states are using the border as a wedge issue to divide people, California and Mexico are showing how cross-border agreements can strengthen our communities while growing our economy and bringing a host of shared benefits.”

Key Takeaways:

  • Governor Gavin Newsom unveiled a historic deal that advances significant border projects and initiatives while solidifying California’s alliance with Mexico. 
  • The most congested border region in the Western Hemisphere will benefit from the new cutting-edge border crossing facility. It will shorten lines, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, drive economic growth, and promote binational trade.

U.S. Department of Transportation Awarded $150 Million Grant

The Otay Mesa East Port of Entry Project recently received a $150 million INFRA grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. The funds will be used to build the new border crossing facility and transportation infrastructure. 

Congress member Scott Peters, California Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis, and Assembly members David Alvarez and Chris Ward were present to sign the Toll Revenue Sharing Agreement. 

By the end of 2024, the new port of entry should be finished.

“This new agreement, which I signed as a witness today, will bring economic prosperity to our cross-border region,” said Lt. Governor Kounalakis. “The Otay Mesa East Port of Entry is a vital link in our nation’s supply chain and in creating thousands of jobs. This historic revenue sharing agreement solidifies the joint commitment of California and the Government of Mexico to boosting trade and creating jobs.”

Significance of Otay Mesa East Port of Entry project

To honor Caltrans, SANDAG, and local partners who have built the necessary supporting transportation infrastructure, as well as those who have planned and developed the Otay Mesa East priority project over several decades, U.S. Ambassador Ken Salazar noted the significance of the signing on “California Day” with a local reception.

β€œCalifornia and Mexico share just 140 of the 2,000 miles of our border, but Cali-Baja punches far above its weight in terms of its contributions to our binational economy and family,” said Ambassador Salazar. β€œThe Otay Mesa East Port of Entry is proof of the dynamism and creativity of our relationship and a symbol of the 21st-century border we want to create.”

The SANDAG and Caltrans-led State Route 11 Otay Mesa East Port of Entry project aims to build a modern border crossing for the San Diego-Baja California megaregion. The project’s goal is to improve regional mobility, spur economic growth, and facilitate binational trade. It is a joint effort with state and federal partners in the U.S. and Mexico.

The planned border upgrades will offer quick, dependable, and secure border crossings by building a four-lane.

Wrap Up!

Governor Newsom’s approach to border policy considers the vitality of the border region and that safe cross-border movement of people and goods is crucial for California, regional economies, and the numerous residents. They cross the border every day for work, family, and school. 

The government prioritizes safety while supporting humanitarian initiatives that safeguard the health and well-being of immigrant arrivals and border communities. To support its model COVID-19 response and humanitarian operations at the southern border, California has invested $477 million.

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