Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120

Enchanted Heights Outreach Produces Spanish Language Video

Continuing its dynamic outreach to the Enchanted Heights community, the City of Perris has completed and is showing a Spanish-language video explaining the new sewer project that will dramatically improve the quality-of-life in the neighborhood.
Construction will soon begin on a $13-millon, three-year project to install sewer lines in the 446-home Enchanted Heights community. The new system will replace aging and inadequate septic tanks, which are prone to leaking and pose potential health concerns.
Ground-breaking is expected to take place later this summer. The City of Perris is working with regional and state partners on the sewer system.

To explain the project and garner the support of residents, Perris officials began a comprehensive outreach program.

City Manager Richard Belmudez and Assistant City Manager Ron Carr met informally with small groups of Enchanted Heights homeowners, outlining the construction schedule and answering their questions. A pair of community meetings at a neighborhood school drew hundreds of residents, who overwhelmingly threw their support behind the plan. Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and

City Councilman Mark Yarbrough spoke at those meetings, further explaining sewer project plans.
City consultant Maria Elena Kennedy spent weeks in Enchanted Heights, talking to almost every resident on her daily walks through the neighborhood.

The City produced several press releases about the project and dedicated a webpage to the Enchanted Heights sewer plan on its website.

City of Perris consultant Maria Elena Kennedy and Video Intern Marden De Castro worked on the Spanish language version of a public service video explaining a new sewer project for Enchanted Heights
City of Perris consultant Maria Elena Kennedy and Video Intern Marden De Castro worked on the Spanish language version of a public service video explaining a new sewer project for Enchanted Heights.

Kennedy, working with Information Technology Manager Arturo Cervantes and Video Intern Marden De Castro, scripted and edited both English and Spanish-language videos which appear on local Channel 3 and the City’s website. Development Services Administrative Assistant Sylvia Arvizu provided Spanish translation assistance.

“Once again, the City of Perris shows its commitment to transparency and its willingness to go the extra mile to explain the importance of this critical project,” Kennedy said after completion of the Spanish-language video. “It is heartening to know that Perris elected officials and City administrators are complete in their dedication to involve the entire Enchanted Heights community in a project that will make life so much better.”

In the eight-minute Spanish video, Mayor Busch and Councilman Yarbrough speak about the City’s commitment to ensuring completion of the sewer installation with a minimum of disruption to community life. Mayor Busch notes that Enchanted Heights is a community that dates back nearly 50 years and that the sewer project has been needed for a long time. Councilman Yarbrough explains that Perris “is a community committed to helping each other.”

Enchanted Heights residents Paz Pena thanked the City Council for developing and implementing the sewer project and said she is pleased the City is improving the quality of life for Enchanted Heights families.

Enchanted Heights resident Martha Ceja said she “gives thanks” to the City Council for replacing septic tanks with sewers.  Her husband, Santiago Ceja, said the new project will ease resident concerns about possible health issues related to inadequate septic tanks.

The City’s outreach efforts won praise during a recent conference featuring about 100 local, state and national water and sewer experts. The conference, titled “Developing Funding for Disadvantaged Community Funding Projects,” was sponsored by Fresno State University. It featured representatives from regional water districts, state agencies, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the United States Department of Agriculture and community activists.

The City of Perris is partnering with Eastern Municipal Water District, the County of Riverside, the California Department of Public Health and the State Water Resources Board to make the sewer project happen.