Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Solution Is in the Pipeline.

Byline: Morgan Lee Journal Staff Writer

* Community members and a nonprofit group try to bring safe water to Jemez Mountain community

HIDDEN VALLEY ESTATES It felt warmer to work below ground in the trenches than the snow-crusted forest high in the Jemez Mountains, according to technicians and volunteers installing a six-inch water main on a brisk December morning.

Residents of Hidden Valley Estates hope to have a new water well and a 12,000-gallon tank in place by August to replace a spring-fed water system that may be contaminated with parasitic worms and plastic residues.

The state began trucking water to Hidden Valley in October, after residents appealed to Gov. Gary Johnson for help. Now they are digging into a construction project designed to provide safe water to 10 houses on a dead-end mountain road.

"It's like paying for another house," said Hidden Valley housewife Nancy Blecha, describing the $36,000, no-interest loan from the New Mexico Board of Finance assumed by several Hidden Valley residents to pay for the new water system. …

Log in to your account to read this article – and millions more.