SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) recently announced the winners of thousands of dollars worth of recycling and illegal dumping cleanup funding. The funds come from a special fee on vehicle registrations in New Mexico and are used to boost recycling and cleanup trash like used tires.

The funding “allows communities throughout New Mexico, especially those in rural areas, to improve the quality of life for their residents while protecting human health and the environment,” Environment Cabinet Secretary James Kenney said in a press release. “The diversity and creativity of projects awarded this year is both impressive and inspiring. These projects will have a positive impact across the entire state.”

Recipients include the City of Clovis, which plans to use about $30,000 to rent a large tire shredder, and the Village of Los Ranchos, which plans to use a similar amount of funding to create a three-bin composting program for community members in urban areas near Albuquerque. Los Alamos County plans to use their allocation of nearly $8,000 to install a solar powered recycling compactor.

The recipient getting the largest grant is the City of Socorro. They plan on using over $240,000 to turn scrap tires into a new cover for their existing local landfill.

Bernalillo County is also getting a large grant. They plan on using over $100,000 to run a media campaign to combat illegal dumping, according to the Environment Department. Information on additional projects can be found online.

These projects are funded on a one-time grant. Next year, the Environment Department will fund a new batch of projects.