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Interstate Stream Commission Members Resign

Three members of the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission (ISC) abruptly resigned in October. The ISC is a Governor-appointed body that oversees the agency charged with protecting, conserving, and developing the state’s waters along with ensuring compliance with interstate water compacts. One of the members who resigned, Jim Dunlap, expressed concern that the State Engineer was not regarding the ISC as a separate and district agency from the Office of the State Engineer (OSE). The two agencies are intertwined water management agencies and have roles that are sometimes conflicting. The OSE approves permits for drilling, appropriations, and water transfers which sometimes puts that agency in conflict with the role of the ISC to protect waters of the state. Dunlap cited concerns over the recent turnover in the staff at the Interstate Stream Commission and related concerns over the need to distinguish between the roles of the ISC and OSE.

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