Las Cruces, New Mexico – The New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) was selected to receive the 2018 West Regional Award of Merit by the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO) for its contributions to the improvement of dam safety in New Mexico.

The New Mexico Office of the State Engineer Dam Safety Bureau nominated NMDA for the ASDSO West Regional Award for the completion of the Soil and Water Conservation District-Owned Dams Inundation Mapping and Emergency Action Planning Project. The project is a product of NMDA's Agricultural Programs and Resources Division.

NMDA's Agricultural Programs and Resources Division Director Julie Maitland said the award is the result of effective collaboration.
"This is a great honor that recognizes the partnerships that NMDA has with New Mexico's Office of the State Engineer Dam Safety Bureau, local Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Flood Control and Emergency Management Officials, AECOM (Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Operations and Management), the engineering contractor and the great work of our team," said Maitland.

Maitland will accept the award on behalf of NMDA Sept. 10 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, Washington during the 2018 Dam Safety ASDSO National Conference.

The Dam Inundation Mapping and Emergency Action Planning Project came into fruition in 2014 after the New Mexico Legislature provided $1 million to NMDA to provide much needed Inundation Maps and Emergency Action Plans to Soil and Water Conservation and Watershed Districts.

NMDA also received grant funding through the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management's Hazardous Mitigation Grant Program, which assisted in the completion of five inundation maps and two regional workshops.

New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte said that this achievement award recognizes the partnerships that NMDA has, as well as the great work of the department. "This was an important and much needed project to begin the process of inundation mapping in order to encourage future dam rehabilitation and emergency action planning," said Witte.

For more information about NMDA's Dam Inundation Mapping and Emergency Action Planning Project, visit http://www.nmda.nmsu.edu/soil-water-conservation-districts-dam-inundation-2/.

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