Mar 6, 2018

Washington, DC (March 6, 2018) Congressman Steve Pearce released the following statement after the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled that the federal government can seek damages against New Mexico in the Texas water case against the state:

“Water is a vital resource in New Mexico and is essential for the growth of our economy and development of our communities. From resolving battles between ranchers and the federal government to protecting water access rights of irrigators, I have fought tirelessly to protect the access rights of all people across New Mexico. This ruling not only furthers the case for Texas, but allows the federal government to stake their involvement in the claim as creators of the Rio Grande Compact. I am disappointed to see the rights of New Mexicans jeopardized throughout this case. As this moves forward, it is my hope that all arguments will be given a fair assessment before final ruling.”

Texas claims New Mexico is violating the Rio Grande Compact by drilling water wells south of the Elephant Butte Reservoir in New Mexico. Earlier this year, the SCOTUS threw out New Mexico’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Yesterday, the SCOTUS ruled that the federal government also has a role in the case as it is responsible for water deliveries to Mexico and it played a role in the original drafting of the Compact.