BELEN, N.M. (KRQE) – The city of Belen and the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District are moving forward with a flood control plan. The city was left underwater in 2021 when heavy rain caused the Highline Canal to break. There was a similar breach back in 2018.

It’s a long-term problem that the city has been battling for years and the cost to fix it is in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Now, they have reached a memorandum of understanding with the conservancy district which regulates the canals for irrigation but isn’t technically in charge of flood control.

This memo allows the entities to work together on flood control projects including a flood channel on the west mesa. Officials called it a good first step.