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Vigil speaks with local Roundtable

Posted: Thursday, Dec 13th, 2012

Colorado Representative Ed Vigil, left, addresses the Rio Grande Roundtable on Tuesday. At right is roundtable member JB Alexander. Courier photo by Ruth Heide

ALAMOSA — Addressing the Valley-wide water group the Rio Grande Roundtable on Tuesday, State Representative Ed Vigil (D) committed to continue working on Valley water issues and working with newly elected State Senator Larry Crowder (R.)

“Larry Crowder and I have talked, and we plan to work as a team for the San Luis Valley, not partisan, so you will have that commitment from me,” Vigil said.

Crowder was in Denver and could not attend the water meeting.

“I will work with Larry and whoever else it takes to make the Valley remain viable for the future,” Vigil added.

Vigil said he met last week with several of the local water leaders at a time when the December temperatures were 60 degrees. Although some snow fell since that time, the lack of moisture is going to remain a factor for the farming and ranching community next year, Vigil said.

“Even if we get rain and moisture, I think we are still behind, and we are going to be behind for awhile, so we need to continue what you guys do best, continue to conserve water,” Vigil said.

Even with efforts in the agricultural community to reduce water consumption this past season, the Valley’s unconfined aquifer storage dropped by about 120,000 acre feet this year for a total of about 1.2 million reduction since 1976, when Engineer Allen Davey began the study.

Vigil said he discussed with the water leaders pending state groundwater regulations for the Rio Grande Basin, which are in the works but not yet completed.

Vigil encouraged the water group and Valley residents as a whole to remain even minded as water issues face the Valley in the next couple of years.

He commended the roundtable for many successful projects that have secured local and state funding in recent years.

Vigil will be serving as vice-chairman of the agricultural committee and chairman of the capital development committee.

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