The Authority inherited several projects from the founding entities, the Lower Rio Grande Mutual Domestic Water Association and the systems that merged with us later, and we have now begun planning, developing and building projects for the Authority as a whole and each of the communities it serves.

2021 – 2025 Infrastructure Capital Improvement Plan

A local infrastructure capital improvement plan (ICIP) is a plan that establishes planning priorities for anticipated capital projects. The state-coordinated ICIP process encourages entities to plan for the development of capital improvements so that they do not find themselves in emergency situations, but can plan for, fund, and develop infrastructure at a pace that sustains their activities.

The due date for the ICIP is early August for Special Districts, so Lower Rio Grande Public Water Works Authority is beginning the annual update of it’s ICIP. At its April 2019 meeting, the Board of Directors authorized two public input meetings. At the June 19th meeting, the Board will discuss the initial draft of the ICIP. The draft plan will be updated with Board input and presented for adoption at the July meeting.

You may download the 2020-2024 ICIP.  Public Meeting flyer is posted below, and Draft 2021-2025 ICIP will posted below when available. Please address comments to Projects Manager Karen Nichols at karen.nichols@lrgauthority.org. Comments may also be submitted in writing to LRGPWWA Attention: Karen Nichols, PO Box 2646, Anthony NM 88021.

We are grateful for the assistance of the South Central Council of Governments for their assistance with the development and submission of our ICIP.

2020-2024 Final LRGPWWA ICIP 7.13.2018

Public Meeting Flyer ICIP 2019

Here is the first draft of our ICIP for 2021-2025:

LRGPWWA Draft ICIP 20190610

Our Board of Directors will review & comment on this Draft ICIP on 6/19/19, and a final draft will be prepared for adoption by the board on 7/17/19.

Please Join Us in Reviewing and Updating Our ICIP:

  • Tuesday, May 21, 2019 at 6:00 pm at our East Mesa Office: 9774 Butterfield Blvd., Las Cruces (Butterfield Park community), NM
  • Wednesday, May 22, 2019 at 6:00 pm at our La Mesa office: 521 St. Valentine, La Mesa, NM

Projects Under Construction

PLEASE BE SAFE AND EXERCISE CAUTION NEAR OUR CONSTRUCTION SITES. WATCH FOR FLAGMEN, DETOURS, AND LANE CLOSURES, AND PLEASE BE CAREFUL AROUND CONSTRUCTION CREWS AND EQUIPMENT.

IF YOU HAVE AN ISSUE OR COMPLAINT REGARDING ONE OF OUR PROJECTS, please do NOT interrupt the contractor’s work crew to discuss it.  Contact LRGPWWA Projects Manager Karen Nichols at 575-233-5742 x1018 or by clicking the blue Contact Us button at the top right of this page, then selecting Project Inquiries/Issues.  That way, your issue will be documented, sent thru the proper channels to get it resolved, and we can follow up to make sure it gets resolved.

Phase I - Mesquite Brazito Sewer Project

Mesquite-Brazito Sewer Projects 1 & 2

The Mesquite-Brazito Sewer Project was initially planned by the Mesquite MDWC & MSWA with the Brazito MDWCA. Both MDWCs are now part of the Lower Rio Grande PWWA, and we are moving forward with it. The Premliminary Engineering Report (PER) and Environmental Document were approved by NMED Construction Programs Bureau, and design funds were awarded by the NM Colonias Infrastructure Trust Fund Board in 2014. A Letter of Conditions for construction funds was issued by USDA Rural Development on 9/26/14. Letter of Conditions for Project 2 was issued on March 5, 2018.

A public meeting was held on October 4th at the Mesquite Fire Station. Here is a download link for the presentation, and a Phase I map PDF link.

Bid Opening for Project 1 was held on 3/28/19, 5 bids were received, and low bidder was File Construction.  On 4/17/19, the LRGPWWA Board of Directors awarded the contract for the project Base Bid to File Construction contingent upon USDA Rural Development approval, and approval has been received.  Additive Alternates 1-3 were not awarded due to high bids and lack of funding to construct them, and these project components (Minter Rd. Area and Hwy 478 at Indian Rd./Carnation Rd./Memory Lane) will be moved to Project 2.  Construction on Project 1 is set to begin June 17, 2019.

Project overall schedule and two-week look-ahead schedule can be downloaded below.  Please be aware that construction schedules are subject to change without notice due to weather or other conditions encountered in the field, so these are best estimates.  Also, see the News & Media  blog post for updates on this project.

Project TimeLine_48 – Mequite Baseline 6-13-19

2 Week Look Ahead 6-17-6-29

Purchase & Upgrade of Valle Del Rio

Purchase & Upgrade of Valle Del RioOn February 29, 2016, we closed on the purchase of the Valle Del Rio Water System just east of the Rio Grande on Hwy. 28. Funding for the purchase an upgrade of this water system was from the NM Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund.

We welcomed nearly 100 new customers with this purchase. A Preliminary Engineering Report was prepared by Souder, Miller & Associates for some upgrades to the system, and design was complete. Morrow Enterprises, Inc. began construction on 3/12/18. This project is substantially complete, and we have applied for funding for Phase II to replace water mains and service lines and rehab the original water storage tank.

Water Outages

Water outages are an unfortunate fact of life during pipeline construction projects. Sometimes there are older lines we don’t know are even there that get broken because they weren’t marked, or lines we knew were there are not exactly where an old plan set said they were, and sometimes, it’s just an accident. Also, the water may be shut off in an area due to something like new lines being tied in to the system. If an outage is planned, we require that contractors notify the customers that will be affected.

If you call our office, we will let you know if there is an estimated time when repairs will be completed, but please be aware that construction is not an exact science this will only be an estimate. When water service is returned after an outage you may notice that the water is cloudy or brown. Once the lines have been flushed and you run the water through your system, it will clear up.

We apologize for any inconvenience, but upgrades are necessary and beneficial. The contractors’ crews and our staff do their very best to prevent outages and restore service when they happen.

If you have project questions or issues due to the construction, you can reach our Projects Manager, Karen Nichols, at 575-233-5742 ext. 1018.

Projects Being Planned & Designed

South Valley Water Supply & Treatment Project

In December 2012, the LRGPWWA closed on NM Water Trust Board Funding for planning and design of a Surface Water Treatment Plant Project.  CE&M was the engineering firm.  As the planning progressed, drought conditions in the state worsened, and it became obvious that surface water would not be a reliable alternative water sources, to the planning scope was expanded to look at Brackish Groundwater Treatment.  CE&M closed their business, and the project was transferred to Bohannan Huston, Inc. with CDM as sub-consultant.  The final PER concluded that brackish water treatment would be prohibitively expensive and recommended that the LRGPWWA (1) construct a new well with arsenic treatment and additional storage in Berino to replace three wells that have failed in the Berino & Desert Sands area due to pumping sand, and (2) complete a Water Master Plan to incorporate existing system-wide hydraulic modeling, a well-siting study, a GIS database, and design standards and analyze existing system components and plan for future infrastructure needs.  Design for the project was completed with the Water Trust Board funds.

The LRGPWWA is currently working with the South Central Council of Governments to apply for Community Development Block Grant Planning Funds to complete the Water Master Plan, and is in the process of applying for USDA Rural Development funds to construct a new well, arsenic treatment facility, and water storage tank in Berino.

East Mesa Water System Improvements Project

In October of 2017, the LRGPWWA was awarded 2 NM Finance Authority Planning Grants for a Preliminary Engineering Report and Environmental Information Document for improvements to the Organ and Butterfield Park water systems comprising the East Mesa Service Area.  Vencor Engineering has completed the planning documents recommending a 3-phase Water System Improvements Project, and we have applied to NM Colonias Infrastructure for funds to complete the design of Phase I.  The overall project will include a replacement well, a large central storage tank with looped transmission lines, some looping of dead-end lines, additional Hwy. 70 crossings interconnecting the two systems, and replacement of older, small diameter lines in Butterfield Park to relocate main water lines out of alleyways.

System-Wide Information Technology Project

The System-wide Information Technology Project was initiated by the Lower Rio Grande PWWA. Some components of this project have been accomplished in conjunction with our ongoing construction projects. For example, funds from the La Mesa Building Project were used to create a wireless intranet system between our offices and install a centralized VOIP phone system, and various water system improvements projects have included some SCADA components. We are grateful to our state legislators for allocating 2013 Capital Outlay funds to this project. That funding was used to upgrade our billing and accounting software. 2014 Capital Outlay was used to purchase and integrate additional SCADA into our existing systems. 2016 Capital Outlay funds were used to complete our SCADA system for the water utility and to purchase rugged laptops or tablets for Operations Staff to be able to interface with our new software out in the field. Contract documents for the SCADA Project are currently under review.

Jacquez Road Waterline Extension

Jacquez Road was omitted from our recent Waterline Extension Project funded by NM Colonias Infrastructure Fund due to difficulty in obtaining an easement.  The LRGPWWA was awarded $50,000 Capital Outlay in 2018 for the project and an additional $139,000 in 2019.  The easement has been obtained, and bid documents are nearing completion and will be submitted to NM Environment Department Drinking Water Bureau and  Construction Programs Bureau for review.  The project should be ready to bid once the 2019 Capital Outlay funds become available late summer/early fall 2019.

Stern Drive Waterline Extension Project

The LRGPWWA was awarded $150,000 Capital Outlay Grant to extend a water pipeline along Stern Drive north of Mesquite Drive.  This is a portion of our Interconnect & Looping Project.  Souder, Miller & Associates is the project engineering firm, and design is underway on the project.

Completed Projects

Berino/Mesquite-Del Cerro Water System Improvement Project - Complete

In 2011, the LRGPWWA Berino/Mesquite-Del Cerro Water System Improvement Project was awarded funding by the New Mexico Water Trust Board and USDA Rural Development at a total of $9.8 million. The partnership with these two funding agencies is making it possible for us to leverage state & federal funds for maximum efficiency and benefits to our communities, and is providing full funding for the project so that it will not have to be built over a longer time-frame in smaller phases.

The Berino piece of the project was initiated by Berino MDWC & MSWA with the Vencor Engineering, and it will include the installation of a large diameter pipeline interconnect to Berino to eliminate the use of a well that violates drinking water standards for arsenic in addition to upgrades to the distribution system to replace aging and inadequate pipelines.

The Mesquite-Del Cerro piece of the project was initiated by Mesquite MDWC & MSWA with Vencor Engineering, and it will upgrade the water distribution system in the Del Cerro community by replacing aging and inadequate pipelines.

These two projects were combined near the end of the planning phase at the request of USDA Rural Development in response to our merger. We have closed on the Water Trust Board and USDA RD funding, and the project is under construction with a completion date in mid-February of 2016. See our Blog page for construction updates.

Waterline Extension Project

The Waterline Extension Project was initiated in response to requests for water service connections from residents along Hwy 28 near Veterans Road and in the Bosque are of west Berino. Funds from the NM Colonias Infrastructure Trust Funds will be used to design and build lines in the Veterans Road area and in other parts of west Berino. Parkhill, Smith & Cooper is the engineering firm for the NM CITF funded project. This project is complete and closed-out.

2014 Capital Outlay funding was added to the Berino/Mesquite-Del Cerro Water System Improvements Project for some of the new lines in Berino, and these have been completed. Vencor was the engineering firm on the BMDC project, and Smithco was the contractor.

How many times have you heard the statement, “They just paved that street, and now they are tearing it up again”? Unfortunately, in the utility industry it is not a rare occurrence.

We have been faced with this appalling potential situation twice, and we are delighted to report that we have been able to prevent it from happening in both instances.

Thanks to communication, coordination, collaboration and cooperation with and between three different engineering firms, two contractors, three funding agencies, the county Engineering Department and NMDOT, and a lot of effort on everyone’s part, we have been able to install water pipeline “stub-outs” across a number of streets in Berino and Mesquite before they were paved in order to avoid tearing up new pavement when our Berino/Mesquite-Del Cerro Water System Improvements Project begins construction.

How cool is that?

Organ Water & Wastewater Project

The Organ Water & Wastewater Project was initiated by the Organ Water & Sewer Association Board of Directors with the engineering firm of Bohannan Huston, Inc. Contractor is Morrow Enterprises. The project was funded by USDA Rural Development, and it included rehab of the existing wastewater lagoon system and replacement of aging and inadequate water lines in Organ, Mountainview and Tierra Alta. The project also included a new booster pumping station and some SCADA components. The many new valves installed with the project allow our Operations staff to better isolate smaller areas of the system when there are line breaks or other work on the lines so that few customers are affected by outages. We were able to add 42 fire hydrants to the system with this project as well.

This project involved a tremendous amount of potholing to try and locate existing water lines, and still resulted in many water outages. We truly appreciate the patience of our Organ customers with the inconveniences caused by the construction.

Radio Read Meter Project

Radio Read Meter ProjectThe Radio-Read Meter Project was initiated by Vado MDWCA, and the current phase was the first project initiated by the Lower Rio Grande Public Water Works Authority. This project will replace the majority of the meters in the LRGPWWA system with radio-read meters resulting in greatly reduced fuel and vehicle expenses and staff time for meter reading. Funding for the project is from the New Mexico Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund administered by the New Mexico Finance Authority and will be used only for purchasing meters. The engineering firm for this project is Wilson & Company, and meter installations are being performed by LRGPWWA staff beginning in May 2013.

Mesquite Waste Water Project

The Mesquite Wastewater Project was initiated by Mesquite MDWC & MSWA with the engineering firm Gannett Fleming West and funding from USDA Rural Development. This project replaced the existing small diameter pressurized system with a gravity sewer system including a number of small lift stations that discharge to the Dona Ana County collection system and treatment plant in Vado instead of the old Mesquite wetlands treatment facility. Construction began in mid-May 2012 and the project was closed out in March of 2015. The contractor for this project was Layne Southwest.

Additional funds were awarded to this project by the Colonias Infrastructure Trust Fund Board so that all remaining bid lots could be constructed and all existing Mesquite sewer customers included in the project.

La Mesa Well Project

La Mesa Well ProjectThe La Mesa Well Project was initiated by the La Mesa MDWCA with the engineering firm Molzen Corbin Associates. It added a well and storage tank up on the west mesa with distribution pipeline looping back to the existing system. The construction contract was awarded to Burn Construction, and construction began in mid-August 2012 and was completed September 2013 including some water pipeline stub-outs in Mesquite that were added to the project.

Alto de Las Flores Emergency Back-up Water Interconnect Project

Alto de Las Flores Emergency Back-up Water Interconnect ProjectThe Alto de Las Flores Emergency Back-up Water Interconnect Project was completed in early April 2013. The interconnection was requested by the Alto de Las Flores MDWCA in order to provide water service to the community of San Miguel in the event of a well failure or other emergency within their system. The project engineering firm was Vencor Engineering, LLC, and the contractor was Rio Services. Funding was provided by the New Mexico Colonias Initiative.

La Mesa Office Building Project

La Mesa Office Building ProjectThe La Mesa Office Building Project was funded by the State of New Mexico Capital Outlay and Colonias Initative. It was completed on May 4, 2012, and the building now houses our Operations & Meter Reading Staff and Customer Service Specialist.

Other Notices & Images

La Mesa Building – Art In Public Places

La Mesa Adobe Shadow DanceOur new office building in La Mesa was completed in May 2012. Because it was built with State funds, a percentage of the funding went to the NM Dept. of Cultural Affairs New Mexico Art In Public Places Program to purchase art for the building. We are delighted to announce the selection of “Adobe Shadow Dance” by Michelle Jackson. The piece has been installed in the Community Room of our La Mesa Office. Please feel free to stop by and enjoy it.

Categorical Exclusion Under National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

The New Mexico Finance Authority has conducted a review of the proposed LRGPWWA Meter Replacement Project in accordance with NEPA and the NM State Environmental Re- view Process (SERP) for the State Drinking Wa- ter Revolving Loan Fund and has determined that the project is eligible for a Categorical Exclusion and therefore exempt from further substantive environmental review requirements. Download the document below in PDF format for details.

Categorical Exclusion Approved 5/17/12 for Meter Replacement Project

Waterline Extension Project Photos

Mesquite-Brazito Sewer Project Photos