San Juan County legislative funding requests include Jackson Lake, infrastructure

Hannah Grover
Farmington Daily Times
Jackson Lake is pictured, Wednesday, July 22, 2015, north of Farmington.

AZTEC — San Juan County will ask the state for funding for improvements at Jackson Lake.

The County Commission approved its legislative priorities during the Dec. 1 meeting that can be viewed on YouTube. 

The county chose to focus on smaller dollar capital outlay requests this year compared to projects in the past. County Manager Mike Stark said the county was advised that it is most likely to receive funding if it asks for projects that are less than $500,000.

The four projects that the County Commission approved submitting for capital outlay funding include Jackson Lake improvements, road resurfacing and chip sealing on County Road 5500, the Five Mile Bridge alternatives study and improvements for county buildings to bring them into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

In the past, the county has submitted requests for millions of dollars in projects. However, since then the economic conditions in the state have changed amid a drop in oil prices as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.

Improvements at Jackson Lake

Stark said the county has talked to New Mexico Department of Game and Fish — which oversees the area — about improvements at Jackson Lake and has received positive feedback. He said there is the possibility of getting federal funding if the county receives capital outlay money from the state. The federal funding requires matching funds, which could be state funds.

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County Commission Chairman Jack Fortner said the proposed improvements include rehabilitating parking lots, improving access trails, adding a floating fishing pier and increasing accessibility for people with disabilities.

“All this goes in line with our outdoor initiative,” he said.

Funding for infrastructure projects

In terms of requests for federal funding, the county’s top priority project is installing a water and wastewater system for the Totah Subdivision. The subdivision located south of Farmington and north of the San Juan River has had problems with possible septic contamination of water wells that serve the houses.

The county will also seek federal funding for right of way acquisition as it works on its share of the Piñon Hills Boulevard extension project. This project is a partnership with the City of Farmington and is intended to decrease congestion on roads in east Farmington by connecting Piñon Hills Boulevard with Crouch Mesa.

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at

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