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Heinrich Announces Committee Support of 25 Local Projects Totaling Nearly $40 Million to Invest in Clean Energy, Water, & Transportation Infrastructure, Build More Affordable Housing in New Mexico, & Fight the Fentanyl Epidemic

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) welcomed the Senate Appropriations Committee’s bipartisan passage of the Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill, the Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations bill, and the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill. This legislation includes $40 million in investments for 25 local projects across New Mexico. Next, the bills will be considered by the full Senate.   

“As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I’m proud to directly advocate for local projects that deliver for New Mexicans through our annual government funding legislation,” said Heinrich. “These three bipartisan bills will deliver substantial and strategic investments to improve New Mexico’s water and wastewater infrastructure, scale our deployment of clean energy and decarbonization technologies, build more efficient and affordable homes, construct safer roads and transportation networks, and fight the fentanyl epidemic.” 

Energy and Water Development Bill Highlights  

Locally Led Watershed Conservation: Senator Heinrich successfully included increased funding for Cooperative Watershed Management through the Bureau of Reclamation’s (BOR) WaterSMART Programs, as well as language directing BOR to take additional steps to make the program more accessible to rural, historically underserved, and Tribal communities. This program has supported New Mexican led watershed conservation efforts, including work by the Santa Fe Watershed Association, the Hatch and Mesilla Valley Cooperative Watershed Management Program, the Animas Watershed Partnership, the Rio Fernando de Taos Revitalization Collaborative, and the Isleta Reach Stewardship Association. 

Coordinated Rio Grande Basin Management: Senator Heinrich successfully included language that emphasizes the need for coordinated water management between the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the Upper Rio Grande Basin and directs the Corps to identify future work that can be done to improve coordinated operations.   

Tribal Partnership: Senator Heinrich successfully included increased funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Tribal Partnership Program. This program is the only Corps authority that specifically works with Tribes as partners, assisting Tribes with water resources projects that address economic, environmental, and cultural resource needs. The program has supported numerous critically important flood control projects on Tribal lands in New Mexico. 

Waiver of Cost Share for Energy Grants to Tribes: Senator Heinrich successfully advocated to make it easier for Tribal communities to receive energy grants from the Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs. In the bill, the Department of Energy (DOE) is encouraged to waive its requirement that award recipients pay for up to half the costs of the awarded project from the Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs, which has a mission to maximize the development and deployment of energy solutions for the benefit of American Indians and Alaska Natives. 

Electric Grid Reliability: Senator Heinrich successfully championed the allocation of up to $1.2 billion in funding to enhance the domestic manufacturing supply chain for electric grid components, which includes financial assistance, technical assistance, and workforce support in innovative technologies. This investment will increase the reliability, resilience, and security of our national electric grid. Senator Heinrich has led bicameral efforts to secure funding for electrical transformers and complementary grid security technologies in the FY24 Appropriations bills, including a letter to the Appropriations Committee requesting $2.1 billion in Disaster Supplemental Funding through the Defense Production Act.  

Technology and National Labs: Senator Heinrich helped to secure $8.43 billion, $330 million over FY23 funding, for the Office of Science that includes support for DOE National Laboratories and newly authorized programs under the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, which is intended to boost domestic research and manufacturing of semiconductors. Sandia National Laboratories and Los Alamos National Laboratory support nearly 30,000 employees in New Mexico. 

Southwest Border Regional Commission:  Senator Heinrich led efforts to secure $8 million in funding (including $3 million in the FY24 Agricultural Appropriations Bill) for the Southwest Border Regional Commission (SBRC), which will foster economic development in the southern border regions of New Mexico, Arizona, California, and Texas. The SBRC service area includes 93 counties on the Southwest border with an average Hispanic population of 48% and a total minority population of 66%. Of the approximately 35 million people the SBRC serves, nearly 5 million live in poverty. The SBRC will support the region’s communities, farmers, and businesses to reduce disparities in energy reliability, income, infrastructure, education, and access to clean water and health care. 

Congressionally Directed Spending  

Senator Heinrich successfully included funding for the following 7 local projects in the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations bill: 

  • $6,750,000 for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to design and construct irrigation infrastructure that is part of acequia systems in New Mexico. Acequias are vital to the agricultural heritage and economy of New Mexico and help keep critically valuable groundwater and surface water resources in balance. 
  • $1,200,000 for New Mexico State University to develop a cybersecurity training and testing center to analyze the security of energy infrastructure and technologies.  
  • $644,000 for the University of New Mexico to develop and demonstrate novel cybersecurity controls and a workforce training program for community microgrid applications. 
  • $260,000 for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to plan for the removal of jetty jacks in the Albuquerque area of the Rio Grande. 
  • $200,000 for New Mexico State University to partner with Jemez Pueblo to study the processing of wood wastes from forest fire burn scar sites and lumber mills to produce biochar, which can be used as feedstock for district heating, soil additives for carbon sequestration, and adsorbents for water treatment. 
  • $128,000 for Mesalands Community College to develop and demonstrate a renewable heating technology to decarbonize high-temperature industrial foundry processes. 
  • $80,000 for the Jicarilla Apache Nation to study opportunities to support the Tribe’s economic development, energy transition, and decarbonization goals.   

Additionally, Senators Heinrich and Ben Ray Luján successfully included funding in the bill for the following 2 projects: 

  • $1,720,000 for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to carry out water-related environmental infrastructure and resource protection projects in communities around New Mexico, which may include projects related to wastewater treatment, water supply, environmental restoration, and surface water resource protection and development. 
  • $500,000 for the Kit Carson Electric Cooperative to transform the Chevron Mine Facility into a green hydrogen production site, providing reliable nighttime renewable energy for members and creating jobs for the Village of Questa. 

Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Bill Highlights 

Rental Assistance: Senator Heinrich successfully included increased funding for Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (Housing Choice Vouchers) and Project-Based Rental Assistance. The Housing Choice Voucher Program helps over 12,000 families in New Mexico. Senator Heinrich also secured additional administrative funding for public housing authorities to ensure that voucher holders, and other individuals who qualify for HUD housing programs, receive the necessary help and assistance to find safe and affordable housing. 

Tribal Housing: Senator Heinrich successfully included an increase of $61.6 million from FY23 for the Indian Housing Block Grant. The Indian Housing Block Grant program is the single largest source of Tribal housing assistance. The program funds affordable housing activities including new housing construction, rehabilitation, and housing services. Senator Heinrich also successfully ensured that funding was not cut from the Tribal HUD-VA Supportive Housing Program, which provides rental assistance and supportive services to Native American veterans who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness living on or near a reservation or other Tribal areas. 

Housing Supportive Services: Senator Heinrich successfully included increased funding for the Resident Opportunities and Supportive Services (ROSS) Program and the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program. The ROSS program allows public housing authorities to hire a program coordinator who links residents with training opportunities, job placement organizations, and local employers, and the FSS program promotes increased earnings and savings among families receiving HUD-funded rental assistance. Program participants work with an FSS service coordinator to identify their financial and employment-related goals, including education or training, and can access a range of support services, such as childcare or credit repair, that can assist in achieving their goals. 

Zero-Emission Buses: Senator Heinrich successfully secured $50 million in additional funding for the Low and No Emission (Low-No) Vehicle Grant Program, which supports transit agencies in purchasing or leasing low or no emission buses and other transit vehicles that use advanced technologies such as battery electric or fuel-cell power. The vehicles can provide a cleaner, more energy efficient transit service in communities across the country. Senator Heinrich is a longtime proponent of this program, introducing the Low or No Emission Bus Access Act in 2020 and securing it in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law passed in 2021. 

Active Transportation Infrastructure: Senator Heinrich successfully included continued funding of $45 million for the Active Transportation Infrastructure Investments Program at the Federal Highway Administration, which awards grants for communities to invest in active transportation networks that include walking and biking routes that enable people to reach their destinations more safely.  

Congressionally Directed Spending 

Senator Heinrich successfully included funding for the following 12 local projects in the Senate Transportation and Housing Appropriations bill: 

  • $4,300,000 for the City of Truth or Consequences to replace aged and damaged waterlines, valves, and hydrants.  
  • $4,000,000 for Bernalillo County to reconstruct Atrisco Vista Boulevard on the West Side of Albuquerque, helping to expand job and housing options for residents. 
  • $3,000,000 for the City of Albuquerque to continue development of a Homeless Youth Center to provide a safe, transitional environment for homeless and unstably housed youth. 
  • $3,000,000 for the City of Las Cruces to design, construct, and furnish a response station to house both its Mobile Integrated Healthcare and Project LIGHT (Lessen the Incidence of Grief, Harm, and Trauma) programs. 
  • $2,500,000 for the City of Albuquerque to develop a police substation in southwest Albuquerque to improve public safety service delivery in the area.  
  • $2,000,000 for Navajo Preparatory School to develop a Community Wellness and Cultural Complex to support academics, extracurricular activities like sports, language, and culture for students, faculty, staff, and communities on the Navajo Nation. 
  • $1,800,000 for the Town of Taos to complete the buildout of 72 vacant lots in the Chamisa Verde Housing Project to provide below-market housing options to working families. 
  • $1,200,000 for the City of Farmington to create the first fully inclusive, accessible, and adaptive park in the Four Corners region.  
  • $1,100,000 for Santa Fe Habitat for Humanity to develop land into a mixed-income development focused on 25 to 30 affordable housing units for low-income families. 
  • $1,000,000 for the Pueblo of Jemez to complete removal of condemned and hazardous buildings to enable new and expanded community development projects and programs. 
  • $200,000 for the Southwest Regional Housing and Community Development Corporation to complete the construction of five homes for very low-income families located in a Department of Housing and Urban Development-Designated Colonia. 
  • $180,000 for the North Central Regional Transit District to purchase a bus for public transportation between Mora and Las Vegas. 

Additionally, Senators Heinrich and Ben Ray Luján successfully included funding in the bill for the following four projects: 

  • $2,000,000 for the Santo Domingo Pueblo to plan, design, repair, and construct over 200 tribal houses within the traditional village. 
  • $1,600,000 for Union and Colfax Counties to plan for the improvement of U.S. Route 87/64 to increase economic development in the area following the route’s designation as a future interstate highway an part of the Ports-to-Plains Corridor. 
  • $338,000 for the Town of Silver City to develop lots and infrastructure in the Vistas de Plata subdivision to ensure affordable housing availability in Silver City. 
  • $283,000 for the Family YMCA to enhance youth substance use prevention services and programming at the teen center in Española.  

State and Foreign Operations Bill Highlights  

Stopping the Flow of Fentanyl: Senator Heinrich successfully included $125 million to support efforts to stop global flows of synthetic drugs like fentanyl and their precursor materials through diplomatic engagement, law enforcement cooperation and capacity building, and governance capacity support. The bill also requires the Department of State to designate a Counter Fentanyl Coordinator to coordinate these initiatives, and it fully funds the implementation of the FENTANYL Results Act to build foreign law enforcement capacity to detect synthetic drugs like fentanyl. 

Combatting the Climate Crisis: Senator Heinrich successfully advocated for additional funding for bilateral and multilateral mechanisms to support biodiversity, adaptation, sustainable landscapes, and clean energy programs, including $150 million for the Clean Technology Fund. 

Humanitarian Assistance: Senator Heinrich successfully included $9.1 billion—a $691 million boost above fiscal year 2023—for humanitarian assistance programs to help meet the unprecedented forced displacement, food insecurity, and other emergency needs across the globe in order to save lives, stabilize communities, and improve global security.