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BROWNSVILLE, Texas (September 29, 2016) – The City of Brownsville hosted the Cross Border Contingency Plan Signing Ceremony on Thursday, September 29, 2016, at the Brownsville Public Library System – Main Branch, 2600 Central Boulevard in Brownsville.
The Cross Border Contingency Plan Signing Ceremony formalized cross border communications and emergency response strategies for the cities of Brownsville/Harlingen, Texas, United States, and Matamoros/Valle Hermoso, Tamaulipas, Mexico in the case of an accidental release of hazardous materials and other hazards.
The Cross Border Contingency Plan, in accordance with the U.S.-Mexico Border 2020 Program, is intended to reinforce the cooperation between the cities to be able to respond more efficiently to hazards, and share resources and manpower in times of local disasters.
The Signing Ceremony featured speeches by Brownsville City Manager Charlie Cabler, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Border Affairs Specialist Claudia Lozano, Brownsville Mayor Tony Martinez, Harlingen Mayor Pro-Tem Michael Mezmar, H. Matamoros Presidente Municipal Norma Leticia Salazar Vasquez, and Cd. Valle Hermoso Presidente Municipal Jose Luis Hernandez Castrellon.
“When disaster strikes, when issues occur, neighbors join forces to take care of each other,” said Brownsville City Manager Charlie Cabler.
“The U.S.-Mexico border environmental program – the Border 2020, is a binational effort designed to protect the environment and public health in the U.S.-Mexico border region,” said TCEQ Border Affairs Specialist Claudia Lozano.
“The Border 2020 Program has five goals,” Lozano added. “Reduce air pollution; improve access to clean and safe water; promote materials management, waste management, and clean sites; enhance joint preparedness for environmental response; and enhance compliance assurance and environmental stewardship.”
“This is what this Contingency Plan is all about,” said Brownsville Mayor Tony Martinez. “It gives us the ability to be prepared, to be organized, and to help one another for the betterment of the people that need it the most.”
“It’s important for Valley cities to support Valley cities,” said Harlingen Mayor Pro-Tem Michael Mezmar. “It’s important for Tamaulipas cities to support Tamaulipas cities. And it’s very important that we support each other, because we’re all one.”
“Hoy, con este proyecto, esta firma también nos permite seguir impulsando el desarrollo de nuestra región, y saber que cuando se presente algún tipo de emergencia, vamos a estar listos y preparados,” said H. Matamoros Presidente Municipal Norma Leticia Salazar Vasquez.
“Muchas gracias por recibirnos en esta mañana y ser testigos y participar en esta importante firma de un convenio de colaboración donde tenemos la oportunidad, de estas ciudades hermanas, de establecer una buena disponibilidad de trabajar ordenadamente en beneficio de nuestras ciudades,” said Cd. Valle Hermoso Presidente Municipal Jose Luis Hernandez Castrellon.
The Cross Border Contingency Plan Signing Ceremony concluded with the official signing of the Cross Border Contingency Plan and a photo opportunity.
Photos from the event are available at: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.521548478050828.1073741849.260097880862557&type=1&l=a0d5074234.