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City to fix channel to stop erosion damage

March 16, 2019 GMT

The City of Rio Rancho has earmarked $315,000 to fix a drainage channel before its failure damages Unser Boulevard.

Rio Rancho Governing Body members unanimously approved the budget adjustment at their meeting Wednesday night at City Hall. The money comes from the $1.1 million in gross receipts tax revenue above budget projects this fiscal year, according to city information.

Interim Director of Public Works B.J. Gottlieb said the city was alerted to the problem in January.

“We determined repair was required soon in order to beat the monsoon season because what our concern is, is that with additional heavy rains like we saw last year and like we’re already seeing this year, we could have additional erosion and failure of that channel,” he said. “But more importantly, the southbound lanes of Unser Boulevard could be compromised and that portion of the road might have to be shut down.”

The failed portion of the Unser Channel, built in 1996, is on the west side of Unser Boulevard, just north of Maggie Cordova Elementary. According to the city, the failure came at the point where the channel transitioned from a concrete lining to an earthen channel.

Gottlieb said little maintenance had probably been done at that spot over the years.

Of the money allotted for the work, $25,000 is for design and $290,000 for the construction.

In other business, governing body members:

? Approved a second and final reading of changes to the ordinance on dangerous or vicious dogs. The changes will become effective July 1, allowing Rio Rancho Police Department time to develop procedures and train staff members.

? Approved a $60,500 contract with Sundance Mechanical and Utility Corporation for a new water line with fire hydrants along Lincoln Avenue between Adams Lane and Lilly Court, a new water line along Curtis Court and a sewer line to the Sports Complex North through Curtis Court.

? Approved a $718,500 contract with D&R Tank Company to upgrade a leaky water storage tank on Kennard Road.

? Approved a zone change from low-density residential to special use to allow French Funerals and Cremation to development a cemetery between its current facility at Unser and Pine Road and the neighborhood to the west. Councilor Jennifer Flor cast the lone dissenting vote but didn’t give a reason.

? Approved a beer and wine liquor license for Stack House BBQ.

? Approved winegrower’s and small brewer liquor licenses for Brew Lab 101 Beer & Cider Co., a new brewery expected to open at 3301 Southern Blvd.

? Postponed decisions on changes to the master plan and zoning for Lomas Encantadas until the March 27 meeting to allow city staff and developer AMREP Southwest to modify the layout of designated open space to make sure there is an appropriate buffer between existing low-density housing and planned higher-density neighborhoods.

? Heard Councilor Dave Bency announce Director of Financial Services Carole Jaramillo is leaving to take a job with the City of Albuquerque. Governing body members complimented the work Jaramillo had done in Rio Rancho.