After a month of political jockeying over how to fund New Mexico’s water infrastructure needs, the state legislature this week approved more than $80 million worth of water projects in their final capital spending bill.
Gov. Susana Martinez had asked legislators to allocate $112 million, but left them frustrated by failing to offer up a list of her preferred projects. Absent that, the allocation followed the traditional jockeying between House, Senate and executive branch over allocation of the annual capital spending bill, according to Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Questa. “We tried to accommodate as best we could,” Cisneros said in a Senate floor interview following adjournment. In the end, the final spending package represented the traditional combination of executive and legislative branch priorities, Cisneros said.
Among the projects are $1 million for the tiny northern New Mexico village of Maxwell, which has struggled with failing water supply for the past year. Money also was allocated for sewage treatment in Chama and groundwater desalination in Alamogordo.
Here’s the full list (pdf). We’ll have more in tomorrow’s newspaper.