Water is a precious resource throughout the southwest and it is a well known fact that New Mexico is in a drought.
Now, Governor Martinez wants the state to spend $112 million to protect New Mexico’s water supply.
A whopping one third of our state is in severe drought or worse, according to the National Drought Mitigation Center.
The legislature will discuss the need for extra funds to fight this and where in the state those funds could go.
The drought is worse in the eastern half of the state, causing lakes to dry up. One republican senator says the lack of precipitation in the east has taken its toll on ranchers, who are seeing decreasing cattle numbers.
“Water is a priority, but we have a lot of priorities. We’ve been looking at these water projects for several years, and we think we have a handle on what needs to be done right away,” said Senator Pat Rogers (District 7).
Another Senator, a Democrat, agrees that water issues are important, but wants to figure out more of a plan of action.
“We need to know exactly what is being funded and what’s the priority. These dollars have to get into our small communities, we agree on that, but boy do we need to be talking together,” said Senator Peter Wirth of Santa Fe.
Once the legislature discusses the capital outlay bill and comes to an agreement, the Governor will either sign it or veto it.