New Water Well Quenches Eunice, NM

By Sarah Snyder
NewsWest 9

People in Eunice may not notice a big difference when they turn on the faucet, but big changes are in the works for the city's water supply. 

A new well is being drilled to make sure a drought won't leave them thirsty.

"Well what it will do is give us that emergency backup situation if we have one or two wells go down," Eunice Mayor Matt White, said.

"A drought over the past several years has caused the City of Eunice to re-think how they pump water into town," Mayor White said.

"It runs from Nebraska all the way into Texas it's the underground water system and it's basically where all the midwest plains folks get their water," Mayor White said. "The biggest problem with it, it is depleating. The water wells in this area are down by about 30%."

There are 8 wells that the City of Eunice uses for their water supply. They're located about 20 miles from town, but city leaders say it's just not enough during a drought, that's why over the past several years, the city has spent $7 million on improving their water system.

"If we ended up with a couple of the wells down, then we really ran short of water," Mayor White said.

The Bureau of Reclamations provided $250,000 to drill a new emergency well, but the money for pumping into Eunice will come out of state and city money. The total cost is estimated at about $600,000.

"To actually get this well online is probably going to take 6 months and it could be as long as 9 months to get it up in operation," Mayor White said.

An Albuqerque company is drilling the new well that can pump about 800 gallons per minute.

"This is just an emergency back up in case one of our other wells quits on us," Mayor White said. "So the average person when he reaches up and turns on his spicket would never know the difference."