State of disaster extended through Oct. 1 for flooding on Coker Road

The city of Socorro held a meeting to go over possible plans to prevent this type of flooding on Coker Road. (Credit: KFOX14/CBS)

City leaders in Socorro have extended a state of disaster caused by flooding on Coker Road.

The city of Soccoro's disaster declaration is now extended through Oct. 1. It was extended on a unanimous vote by the Socorro City Council Tuesday night. The extension will help get more resources out to help neighbors.

The state of disaster was originally declared last week and lasted seven days. It happened after storms ripped through the city and forced people living on Coker Road out of their homes.

This new attention from the city and El Paso County is what the neighbors on Coker Road have been waiting for more than a decade.

"It at least gives us peace of mind that the city is going to help us in case we need the berms rebuilt or we need them to go in, they are going to be there," said Rick Avalos, whose family has lived on Coker Road for 40 years.

The City Council hopes this gets the area help all the way through monsoon.

"What it accomplishes is that all of our services will be on hand ready to go. This will help us better prepare just in case another disaster comes in," Mayor Pro Tem Rene Rodriguez said.

But the flooding and the affected neighbors were almost not the center of attention at the meeting Tuesday night. Council was set to talk about the upcoming runoff election for the mayor and District 2 seats. That is, until the current District 2 Rep. Alejandro Garcia, spoke up. He said he was embarrassed it was on the agenda Tuesday night, and the City Council should be focused on Coker Road and the victims living there.

"To bring it up again, this is the second time we bring it up, no case. Especially in a time right now that we need to come together and make sure we help our residents with the flooding," Garcia said.

If the disaster declaration needs to be extended past Oct. 1, the city said there is no limit on the number of times it can declare.

County Commissioner Vince Perez said a countywide storm water tax is not a viable option right now. The county is meeting next week with all of the water districts to come up with a long-term solution.

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