FARMINGTON, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico communities are still working to clean up after wastewater from the Gold King Mine flowed into the Animas and San Juan River in 2015. Now, a draft restoration plan proposes funding 10 large restoration projects.

The plan, released by the New Mexico Office of Natural Resources Trustee (ONRT), would put $12 million from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and contractors towards projects. And ORNT wants public comment on the proposed projects.

The projects are:

  • City of Aztec, Construction of North Main Wastewater Management Infrastructure ($480,000)
  • City of Aztec, Rehabilitation of Raw Water Reservoir 1 ($950,000)
  • City of Farmington, Construction of Whitewater Wave and Irrigation Diversion Dam at Farmington Gateway Park ($2,000,000)
  • Navajo Nation Department of Fish and Wildlife, Construction of Nenahnezad Chapter San Juan River Boat Ramp ($65,575)
  • New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission, San Juan River Water Lease Agreement Partnership ($1,803,000)
  • New Mexico State Parks Division, Construction of an Aquatic Invasive Species Station on San Juan River Quality Waters ($205,226)
  • San Juan County, Construction of San Juan River Public Boat Ramps and Park Improvements ($681,440)
  • San Juan County, Construction of the San Juan County Extension Service Office Building ($2,300,000)
  • San Juan County, Construction of Water and Wastewater Improvements for the Totah Subdivision ($1,000,000)
  • San Juan Soil and Water Conservation District, Construction of Irrigation Ditch Diversion Project ($1,616,600)

Those projects were chosen from 17 submitted to ONRT. “These ten projects will deliver tangible benefits to residents along the Animas and San Juan Rivers and provide some small compensation for the injuries caused by the release,” Trustee Maggie Hart Stebbins said in a press release.

To comment on the plan to fund these projects, the public can submit comments online via a public comment portal. Comments can also be sent via email ( and in hard copy at 121 Tijeras Avenue NE, Suite 1000, Albuquerque, NM 87102. The comment period will be open from April 1, 2023, to May 1, 2023. The full draft plan is available online at this link.