PORTALES, N.M. (KRQE) – Amid hot summer temperatures, one New Mexico city has been under water restrictions. City officials are frustrated, saying not everyone is doing their part to conserve during the crisis.
Since late June, people living in Portales have been under tough water restrictions to save water due to declining water levels in the area.
“Currently, now you drive through town and all the yards are yellow and brown, and it’s not a good situation,” said Portales resident Eldon Merrick.
While the city claims it’s doing its part, it’s insisting the Roosevelt County Water Co-op enforce the same rules for their customers in rural parts of the county. The co-op buys its water from the City of Portales.
“We had asked them to monitor that and to reign that in and kind of throttle that back a little bit or that the city would have to end up doing that for them. That’s exactly what ended up happening on Friday, we’ve turned that meter back down,” said Portales Mayor Ron Jackson.
Mayor Jackson said when the co-op used an excess amount of water, the city was forced to reduce water being sent, causing low water pressure for some areas. According to the city, Portales has been in contract negotiations with the co-op for more than a year and a half regarding the situation.
The city added water conservation helps rest some of their wells. Until better solutions are found, the city is begging residents to conserve.
“This is nothing that we are not used to in the summer. This has just been more extreme this year,” said Mayor Jackson.
KRQE reached out to the co-op but did not hear back. However, in online posts, it states the co-op is working with its board of directors and attorneys to restore water and mentioned it has been following restrictions.