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SAN LUCAS, Calif. (KION-TV): While some parts of the Central Coast may be cool, other parts of southern Monterey County are seeing temperatures in the triple digits.

According to Monterey County, people in San Lucas are not only battling the heat, but have also been without clean drinking water for over ten years.

Maria Velasquez has lived in San Lucas for 35 years. She says she is looking for ways to stay hydrated in temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius. That is difficult, especially because she does not have clean drinking water.

“It's very hard, we have no choice but to go to the river and get wet,” Velasquez said.

Velasquez said she and all other residents of San Lucas only get clean water twice a week. They get two jugs of water on Tuesdays and three on Thursdays.

Velasquez said the water jugs she gets are still not enough, especially during the heat. She said she sometimes has to buy more water.

Monterey County Executive Christopher Lopez said the fight for clean drinking water in the San Lucas community is not over. Months ago, federal and local politicians secured $1 million to build a pipeline between San Lucas and King City.

Supervisor Lopez said they are waiting for a study from the state that will detail the reasons for water pollution in San Lucas and the potential costs of building the pipeline.

“We are waiting for the state to release that study, but in the meantime, that doesn't mean we're stopping,” said Monterey County Supervisor Lopez. “We're trying everything we can [like] I am proposing new laws that would allow the state to invest more than its per-connection budget into this community to solve the problem.”

Velasquez knows the process of getting clean drinking water has been lengthy, but she says she is not losing faith. She also says she will do whatever she can to get clean drinking water because the contaminated water has severely affected her skin.

“I'm constantly putting lotion on my skin because it gets very dry and itchy, and I'm constantly touching my skin,” Velasquez said.

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