Regional Water Planning
The New Mexico Legislature recognized the state's need for water planning and created the regional water planning program in 1987 72-1-43 and 72-14-44 N.M.S.A., Cum Supp. 1993). This legislation designated the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission to implement the state’s regional water planning program. Between 1999 and 2008 the Commission officially accepted regional water plans from all sixteen water planning regions.
Between 2011 and 2013 New Mexico experienced one of the most extreme droughts on record. This signaled an urgent need for regional water plan updates from all sixteen planning regions. Application of a consistent technical approach in all regional water plan updates serves to better support integration within an updated State Water Plan as required by state statute (72-14-3.1 N.M.S.A.)In 2013 the ISC created an “Updated Regional Water Planning Handbook” and in 2015 the Commission approved updated “Acceptance Criteria” for this round of regional water plan updates.