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Dona Ana County holds emergency meeting in Berino after floods tear through
By: Gina Benitez
EL PASO, Texas
Dona Ana County held an emergency meeting in Berino Saturday after the community was ravaged by floodwaters.
Residents, in need of help had questions and the county, had some answers.
"It's a very strange dynamic in which the water was coming in. There wasn't much rain here in town. The runoff came from the mountain," said Sue Padilla, Dona Ana County interim county manager.
Seemingly out of nowhere, floodwaters ripped through Berino Thursday night.
What followed was caved in roadways, overturned graves, muck, mud and a slough of residents who've had enough.
"We're repairing roads, we have crews out there right now. The main issues that we have here are the water damages done to the homes," Padilla said.
Today, people packed the Mision Betel Church where the county held an emergency meeting for anyone affected.
"Our goal here today is to make sure we work with agencies to get them back into their homes, get their homes clean and make sure they're safe," Padilla said.
But the recent issues for some have been going on far too long for others.
"It happens to us, where we live, every time it rains. Even if we get a little sprinkle. Because any kind of water that comes into the town goes down my street," said Gloria Galvan, a Berino resident.
"This has been going on for years. Everytime they come to make a project here, to fix something, I get damage in my house," said Armando Carbajal, another Berino resident.
The county says they know what needs to be fixed.
"The infrastructure that's there is not adequate. We've addressed over time the millions that it's going to be costing the county for each flood structure that we have to put up," Padilla said.
But it won't happen right away.
"Unfortunately, the dollars aren't there for these major projects. When you're looking at sometimes five to 10 million dollars that we need to do that," Padilla said.
"It's been a tragedy for many of our communities and we want them to know we're here for them and then we're going to help continue to build these communities back," Padilla said.