I am happy to announce that I have been appointed to serve on the Citizens Forum Board of the International Boundary and Water Commission. The board was established to open a dialogue between community members and interested parties regarding the concerns and needs between the USIBWC and the communities it serves.
With boundary and water issues among the top concerns for El Paso County, having a voice in the discussion of these critical issues will be a great benefit for the citizens of El Paso County. The fair apportionment of water from the Rio Grande is of vital importance to both El Paso County residents and to the agricultural community, which contributes millions of dollars to our local and regional economies and creates employment opportunities for thousands of county residents.
Looking forward, I am eager to work with USIBWC Commissioner Ed Drusina along with board members representing various entities and communities from throughout our region.
Below is the press release of the appointment from the IBWC.
International Boundary and Water Commission
United States Section
For immediate release
January 9, 2014
USIBWC APPOINTS RIO GRANDE CITIZENS FORUM BOARD; PUBLIC MEETING SET FOR JAN. 14 IN EL PASO
Commissioner Edward Drusina of the U.S. Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) has announced the appointment of 12 people to serve on the 2014-2015 Rio Grande Citizens Forum (RGCF) board. The purpose of the RGCF is to promote the exchange of information between the USIBWC and the community about Commission projects and related activities along the Rio Grande between Percha Dam, NM and Fort Quitman, TX.
Commissioner Drusina has appointed the following individuals, who will serve as volunteers for a two-year term:
- John Balliew, El Paso Water Utilities, El Paso, TX
- Daniel Chavez, Hudspeth County Conservation & Reclamation District No. 1, Fort Hancock, TX
- John Cornell, Doña Ana County Associated Sportsmen, New Mexico Wildlife Federation, Hillsboro, NM
- Travis Johnson, attorney, El Paso, TX
- Conrad Keyes, Jr., Paso del Norte Watershed Council, Las Cruces, NM
- Carlos Leon, El Paso County Commissioner, El Paso, TX
- Zachary Libbin, Elephant Butte Irrigation District, Las Cruces, NM
- Austin Marshall, University of Texas at El Paso, Professor of Civil Engineering, El Paso, TX
- Suleiman "Sal" Masoud, Del Rio Engineering, El Paso Association of Builders, El Paso, TX
- Dale Reinhardt, Mayor, Town of Clint, TX
- Gill Michael Sorg, Las Cruces City Council, Audubon Society, Las Cruces, NM (Olga Pedroza, Las Cruces City Council, as Alternate)
- Miguel Teran, El Paso County Water Improvement District #1, Rosedales Neighborhood Association, El Paso, TX
"We had an outstanding group of applicants this year," said Commissioner Drusina. "I know this board will do a great job in helping us with outreach to the community about the region's water issues."
The first meeting with the new board is scheduled for Tuesday, January 14, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at USIBWC Headquarters, 4171 N. Mesa Street, Building C, El Paso, TX 79902 (see attached agenda). At the meeting, staff will give an overview of the Commission's history, mission, and projects followed by orientation for the new board. The meeting is open to the public.
The USIBWC established the Rio Grande Citizens Forum in 1999 to facilitate the exchange of information regarding USIBWC activities in the greater El Paso, TX-Las Cruces, NM region. It is designed to bring together community members, enabling the early and continued two-way flow of information, concerns, values, and needs between USIBWC and the general public, environmentalists, irrigation districts, municipalities, and others interested in the Rio Grande.