New Mexico lawmakers discuss water issues

New Mexico lawmakers discuss water issues

POSTED: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - 5:40pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - 5:41pm

New Mexico legislators are meeting in Las Cruces to discuss water and how the current drought has impacted the region.

The topic is of vital importance with the continued drought conditions the state has been facing in the last couple of years.

"The legislature recognizes that water is the source of everything we're trying to do down here," said District 31 Senator Joseph Cervantes.

Cervantes said whether it's economic development or jobs, all those things depend on a ready and available source of water.

Member of the Water and Natural Resources Committee and the Drought Subcommittee have heard about litigation between state's rights to water in the Rio Grande.

Lawmakers are concerned over litigation that has even reached the U.S. Supreme Court and how that can impact the state's agriculture.

During the afternoon session, farmers addressed concerns over water rights and how those should be handled with priority for senior holders.

Lawmakers are also hearing updates on water shortages and water levels at reservoirs and how future laws can address these issues.

The three-day hearing at the NMSU Golf Course concludes Wednesday.

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