The Santa Ramona Chronicles

Local News & Events

Evacuation Update Press Release

January 21, 2020

 

Dear Citizens of Santa Ramona,

    Many of you have have begun asking why I gave the order to evacuate Santa Ramona.  First off I would like to reiterate that the evacuation was a safety precaution.  No one was exposed to anything dangerous and the decision to evacuate was made in order to maintain public health and safety.
 
     The helicopter that crashed into the dam belonged to the CDC.  It was enroute from Mexico to their labs in Los Angeles.  Onboard was a sample of Salmonella enterica enterica, serovar Typhi.  In layman's terms that is Typhoid Fever.  This particular strain is highly resistant to all known forms of treatment.  Typhoid is highly contagious. The sample container was broken open in the crash.  Traces of the bacterium was found in the water at the dam and only there.  Because the water was turned off the bacterium did not travel through town.  

 

    Santa Ramona was evacuated so that the CDC and a bevy of federal agencies could disassemble the dam in order to replace all of the pipes inside it.  However due to the age of the dam it was decided to remove the structure entirely.  A new water retention system is being installed.  All piping throughout the city are being replaced as a precaution.  As a result of this decision some buildings have been destroyed or relocated.  Many of Santa Ramona's structures are of historical significance and as such were relocated to structurally safer areas within the city.  The attached file "Committee to Rebuild Santa Ramona Valley, contains a letter sent to the Governor's office, to be released to the public as part of governmental transparency in this situation.  It spells out much more clearly the changes citizens can expect.

 

    Work has proceeded at a brisk pace and currently we are on track to be able to return to town next weekend.  Once the authorities give the all clear a message will go out with return times for everyone.  This will allow for an orderly repopulation of the town. I know this situation has been stressful on many people, including myself.  I want to thank each and every citizen on their cooperation during this emergency.

 

Sincerely,
Mayor Chiara Villanova

 

 

 

To the office of Governor Julian Stone:

 

The governmental municipality review has been integral in the refreshing of Santa Ramona Valley after the unfortunate incident with the CDC exposure to your outdated and defunct dam.  Many of the federal government offices have evaluated the city and have made changes as they saw fit to ensure a safe city was returned to the citizens.

 

The dam has been dismantled and removed, however we found several issues with the engineering of the city due to age and wear, and had to not only pull in a team of civil engineers, but after seeing the scope and size of the issues and geography, several government agencies were brought in to assess.  The structure that we dismantled had several drainage pipes, reservoirs and drain fields, because the main contaminant was definitely located in the drainage area, all of those had to be evaluated.  This could cause risk to structures above ground in some cases and possible future risk to some. 

 

To combat that, we have dismantled and moved the structures we could, most specifically those with historic value or that were structurally sound and less expensive to move.  To those structures we were not confident in the survival of a move, they were rebuilt.  Our civil engineers took great effort to attempt to move them to a place with the best structural fitness and also to repair the underground structures that were ultimately damaged.

 

The National Historical Society would not allow some buildings to be demolished and the Department of Urban Housing and Development surveyed your 'Southside' location of Santa Ramona Valley.  in doing so, they realized several things.  Many buildings were of historical significance, structurally sound, yet may look to be in severe disrepair.  We were ordered to only move those to a safe location and not improve upon the structures to force a gentrification of the urban area.  Seeing the disparity between the two locales that were delineated by the mall, should the Southside region improve greatly, the housing costs would increase and cause a great deal of homelessness in your area.  To combat that, there were no immediate improvements.  

 

The mall that was located in center of your city has also been decided it cannot sustain the movement necessary.  In speaking with the investors that owned the mall, they opted for a cash out payment for the mall instead of rebuilding.  The investors that own many of the buildings and land in Southside have denied any cash out options and have worked with us in the movement of the buildings.  

 

The Department of Urban Housing and Development also looked at other populations and economic differences in your city and upon its growth from the last review, they have determined that the Sheriff's Department is not suitable to sustain the reasonable protection and cross section of your citizenry.  They have demanded that a small police sub station be placed in the zone designated as 'Southside' and this facility work to ensure the safety and lawfulness of that region for most cases.  Because the substation will not have a full budget for CSI or in depth forensics, the Sheriff's Department will have jurisdiction over homicides, serial rapists, and terrorism.  Because the CDC has committed to ensuring Santa Ramona Valley is able to sustain their city upon reoccupancy, they will be incurring the cost to build the police station and fund it for one year. 

 

The Santa Ramona Valley dam was the conveyance for the drainage of your city, supplied water to the city and created a power source for much of the area.  The first plan was to replace the dam fully, though the EPA did a study of your area and determined the land usage necessary for such an undertaking would be detrimental to the efforts to restore the California Condor population.  As I am sure you are aware, the population is slowly increasing after great efforts of the Audubon Society and the Federal Government.  There is evidence that Santa Ramona Valley has a small population of the Condor in their area and the increased land usage of a new dam would endanger those numbers.  Therefore a canal system was included to help with the clean drainage of your city, this only used portions of the underground and some of your already developed above ground to install, alleviating that need for the dam.  In the industrial area of Southside, a power plant that had once supplied power to the city was refreshed and put back into service, thus alleviating the power need of the dam.  Underground reservoirs were dismantled and relined to supply water to the city, along with state of the art water filtration to ensure your citizens have clean, great tasting water.

 

The construction is ongoing, though we are nearing a completion date soon.  On behalf of the United States Government and the CDC, we apologize for this inconvenience.  

We look forward to seeing Santa Ramona Valley thriving once again.

Sincerely,
members of:
US Advisory Council on Historic Preservation
US Agricultural Department
US Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services
US Bureau of Justice Statistics
US Bureau of Land Management
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
US Commerce Department
US Council on Environmental Quality 
US Department of Agriculture (USDA) 
US Department of Energy (DOE) 
US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) 
US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) 
US Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment 
US Endangered Species Program 
US Energy Department (DOE) 
US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
US Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO) 
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 
Federal Housing Administration (FHA) 
US Geological Survey (USGS) 
US  Health and Human Services Department (HHS)
US Health Resources and Services Administration 
US Interagency Council on Homelessness 
US Interagency Committee for the Management of Noxious and Exotic Weeds 
US  Marine Mammal Commission
US Maritime Administration (MARAD) 
US Migratory Bird Conservation Commission 
National Agricultural Statistics Service 
National Health Information Center (NHIC) 
National Marine Fisheries Service 
US Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Bureau of (BSEE) 
 

 

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