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Local leaders gather as SLO County works to repair Arroyo Grande Creek Levee

San Luis Obispo County is working to repair the Arroyo Grande Creek levee, which burst open from previous winter storms this year.
Photo by Amanda Wernik.
San Luis Obispo County is working to repair the Arroyo Grande Creek levee, which burst open from previous winter storms this year.

San Luis Obispo County is working to repair the Arroyo Grande Creek levee, which burst open from previous winter storms this year.

Central Coast local leaders were there today to see the progress firsthand.

With El Niño rainfall expected to come this winter, construction crews are removing sediment from the Arroyo Grande Creek to make sure its water can flow freely.

Kate Ballantyne is the deputy director of public works for SLO County.

“The goal of this project that you see going on behind us is to restore the system to pre-2023 conditions,” Ballantyne said.

State Senator John Laird, who represents parts of the Central Coast, was also at the levee today.

Assemblymember Dawn Addis, State Senator John Laird, SLO County Deputy Director of Public Works Kate Ballantyne, and District 4 Supervisor Jimmy Paulding (Left to right).
Photo by Amanda Wernik.
Assemblymember Dawn Addis, State Senator John Laird, SLO County Deputy Director of Public Works Kate Ballantyne, and District 4 Supervisor Jimmy Paulding (Left to right).

“The last time I was standing here was in the middle of the storms in January, where the levee had been notched,” Laird said. “There was a big concern about safety.”

Laird worked alongside Assemblymember Dawn Addis to secure more than $1 million in state funding to repair the creek’s levee.

“State Senator Laird and I had to stare down looming budget deficits to be able to bring money into our County to address this project, but it was one that I never questioned if we would prioritize after what we saw during the storms,” Addis said.

According to County officials, the Arroyo Grande Creek levee’s repair is expected to continue into the winter.

SLO County Deputy Director of Public Works Kate Ballantyne, State Senator John Laird, Assemblymember Dawn Addis, and District 4 Supervisor Jimmy Paulding (Left to right).
Photo by Amanda Wernik.
Assemblymember Dawn Addis, State Senator John Laird, SLO County Deputy Director of Public Works Kate Ballantyne, and District 4 Supervisor Jimmy Paulding (Left to right).

KCBX Reporter Amanda Wernik graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a BS in Journalism. Amanda is currently a fellow with the USC Center for Health Journalism, completing a data fellowship that will result in a news feature series to air on KCBX in the winter of 2024.
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