Acequias own historic easements on U.S. Forest Service land where acequia irrigation works have been in use prior to the establishment of the USFS. In recent years, burdensome USFS regulations have created barriers to the continued historic and traditional uses by community lands grants and acequias.
NMAA leadership recently met with USFS Regional Forester, Cal Joyner, to discuss potential policy solutions to these barriers. Acequia leaders emphasized the need for legislation clarifying that acequias that pre-date the USFS own historic easements on USFS lands and can therefore conduct maintenance and improvements without special use authorization by the USFS. NMAA's Executive Director, Paula Garcia, stated that acequias are in a phase of renewal and that they are, “trying to sustain what our ancestors begun." Regional Forester, Cal Joyner, was receptive to comments and agreed that acequias have a preexisting right that should be respected