Plan calls for boosting forest restoration around New Mexico

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) – More than 140 square miles of overgrown, fire-prone areas around New Mexico have been thinned over the last several years, but state forestry officials are telling lawmakers they need more funding to continue the work.

The Forestry Division is seeking another $4 million in capital funds to expand a statewide watershed restoration program.

Acting State Forester Eddie Tudor told members of a House committee Monday that his agency is on track to complete several projects by the end of the year.

However, he says there are more areas that still need to be treated, including parts of the Santa Fe watershed.

Tudor says both state and federal land managers will be meeting this spring to identify other projects that have the potential to improve water quality and benefit entire landscapes.

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