Governor: New Mexico needs realistic, sustainable water plan

New Mexico

FILE – In this Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018, file photo, a tumbleweed sits at the edge of the Rio Grande on the northern edge of Albuquerque, N.M. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has long talked about the importance of water to the arid state, even campaigning on the idea of creating a 50-year plan to guide management of the finite resource. Her administration is now asking lawmakers for more money and manpower to start what some experts say will be a multiyear endeavor. (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan, File)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s administration is asking lawmakers for money and manpower to create a plan for managing the state’s water resources for the next five decades.

Legislative analysts have recommended less money than requested be spent on the effort, but supporters say it’s critical the state starts charting a course that will allow for flexible water management in the face of more drought and climate change.

The state’s most recent water plan was rolled out in 2018 and includes details about policies, historical legal cases and regional water plans.

While it offers an inventory of the state’s needs, critics say it falls short of laying out a concrete path for how to solve water problems.

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