State of New Mexico
House of Representatives
Ben Lujan, Speaker of the House
Ken Martinez, House Majority Leader
Sheryl Williams Stapleton, House Majority Whip
For Immediate Release
Contact: Susan Tungate 505-577-8132
October 21, 2008
Rep. Nathan Cote Responds to Community’s Request to Intervene in Addressing Solutions
to Issues of Flood Control in Dog Canyon and Boles, Otero County
Santa Fe, NM- During the last two Sessions of the New Mexico Legislature, Representative Nathan Cote (D-Las Cruces-53) has procured approximately nearly $1 million in state capital outlay funds for the purpose of flood control measures to alleviate the flooding in the colonias areas of Dog Canyon and Boles Acres, Otero County.
Representative Cote recently learned from concerned members of the community that Otero County is unable to spend those funds because the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers must first evaluate Otero County’s flood prone areas and develop a plan with federal agencies. Despite the efforts of the County of Otero, the Corps of Engineers has yet to perform the evaluation so that the County may move forward with a flood mitigation plan.
“Members of the community are understandably upset at this stand still,” said Representative Cote. “They asked me to intervene and try to resolve this issue. I immediately sent a letter to Senator Jeff Bingaman with copies to Governor Bill Richardson and others. I have now spoken with the Senator’s staff and am working closely with them to craft a plan. I have also spoken to Governor Richardson directly about the issue. I am doing my best to help the County move forward, but my hands are tied until the federal agencies develop their plan.”
Representative Cote’s letter of October 2, 2008, to Senator Bingaman said in part: “Because of Dog Canyon’s proximity to several canyons and changes to a number of geological factors, rain water drainage is causing road, residence and other flooding resulting in a hindrance to the safety and quality of life to the residents. For example, recent flooding has caused one of the exit roads to be completely closed. That leaves only one road out if a disaster should occur….I would like to encourage you to assign a member of your staff to meet with the County Administrator, Mr. Tim Smith, and/or with Commissioner Doug Moore to identify federal assistance necessary to develop a plan with federal agencies and funding so that eventually the state grant money may be used to protect these citizens.”