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Gila River Diversion: Conflict of interest in New Mexico?

February 23, 2015
For Immediate Release
Contact: Gary Wockner, E.D. Save The Colorado, 970-218-8310

GILA RIVER DIVERSION: CONFLICT OF INTEREST IN NEW MEXICO?
Governor Martinez appoints new Interstate Stream Commissioner

Colorado River, U.S.: The controversy around the proposed Gila River Diversion in New Mexico keeps escalating. Recall that the New Mexico Governor-appointed “Interstate Stream SUSANA-MARTINEZCommission” agreed to support the Diversion in late 2014. The agreement in part stemmed from a widely criticized but favorable design and evaluation work done by an engineering consulting firm, Bohannon-Huston Inc., a company paid over $1 million by the State Commission in the past 3 years. Now, Governor Martinez has appointed the Vice President of Bohannon-Huston to be the new Director of New Mexico’s Interstate Stream Commission. Read the story here on KRWG TV’s website, “Martinez Appoints New Leader For New Mexico Commission Overseeing Possible Gila Diversion.”

The State of New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission had these past contracts with Bohannon-Huston Inc. for work in the Gila (“AWSA” is the Gila River Diversion):

  1. 5/14/2012 Bohannon-Huston, Inc. Review with ISC staff the project objectives, requirements and design criteria as available. Assist the ISC staff in crafting draft scopes of work for engineering assessments of the 16 projects selected by the ISC for further assessment for funding under the 2004 AWSA GR-12-1 9714 $8,440
  2. 1/15/2013 Bohannon-Huston, Inc. Grant County effluent reuse and reservoir and City of Bayard effluent reuse GR-13-1 10576 $67,908
  3. 5/7/2013 Bohannon-Huston, Inc. Gila Engineering Services GR-13-2 11041 $260,686
  4. 9/4/2013 Bohannon-Huston, Inc. Grant County effluent reuse and reservoir and City of Bayard effluent reuse GR-13-1 11638 $18,990
  5. 5/12/2014 Bohannon-Huston, Inc. Phase II Engineering Evaluation of the 2004 AWSA Diversion and storage proposals GR-14-1 12596 $698,527TOTAL: $1,054,551

“What’s going on in New Mexico?” ask Gary Wockner, E.D. of the Save The Colorado River Campaign. “Is it a ‘conflict of interest’ for Governor Martinez to appoint an executive of a state contractor to an important post which funds and oversees those contracts?”

The Gila River in New Mexico is one of the last free-flowing tributaries in the Colorado River basin.

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