TO LICENSE APPLICANT:
A new general licensing program is being initiated for the issuance of permits, licenses, and crossing agreements over the benefited lands of the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District (District). The new licensing program will benefit the District and the constituents of the District by providing more timely service to applicants seeking permits, licenses, and crossing agreements. The Bureau of Reclamation (Bureau) has in the past been responsible for executing license agreements. The new licensing process will keep the Bureau’s involvement as an approving signatory agency and the District shall grant licenses across the benefited lands of the District, which the Bureau has, exclusive easement interest. The new program takes into consideration current licensing procedures, technology, safety, and environmental criteria. The granting and administration of the licensing process has necessitated the adoption of a charge for the crossing of benefited District lands by utilities (underground, surface, and aerial) as well as for the use of the lands by others for various types of structures or facilities.
Exception may be made only for certain types of land use which result in benefits to the District, for agencies having reciprocal arrangements with the District, or in special situations requiring special considerations.
A payment of fees and charges will be required prior to executing the license by the District. When total charges are not known in advance due to extraordinary inspection(s) and other requirements yet to be determined, an estimated amount will be paid by the license applicant in advance after billing, subject to later adjustment, as required, or billing of total fees and charges will be made at the completion of the work. A schedule of fees and charges which will apply and which is subject to adjustment, as costs vary, is as follows:
- For a standard license or agreement requiring the approval of the Bureau of Reclamation (Bureau), with minimal requirements for issuing and administering the license, for minimal engineering, out-grant appraisal, environmental review, and for inspection of construction, the fee and charges will be a non-refundable two hundred dollars ($200.00). For a standard permit or agreement not requiring Bureau approval, a fee may or may not be required depending on the nature of the license request. Such fees may be refunded in full or in part if the District and or Bureau deny the request after careful evaluation.
- For permits or agreements requiring extensive field investigations, surveys, engineering reviews of plans, environmental reviews, of other requirements yet to be determined, an estimated amount will be paid in advance after billing, subject to later adjustment, as required, or billing of total fees and charges will be made at the completion of the job.
- For use of District lands for utility lines and other purposes in excess of 100 feet in length, there may be an additional charge for the use of right-of-way. This charge is in addition to the charges outlined above.
The adequacy, completeness, thoroughness of data and material supplied with the license and permit request will contribute toward limiting the costs charged by the Bureau and the District.
TO INITIATE the license or permit process, the applicant must submit to the District a letter of request and construction plans for the license together with the License Application Form for the proposed installation. In order to process a license application, the request must be accompanied by the payment of fee and charges, preferably by check or money order made payable to the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District. A minimum of thirty (30) days should be considered for completion of the processing and administration of licensing and permits.
The Bureau, when required, and the District will review the License Application and construction plans and will grant written approval or disapproval of the proposed installation. The applicant may be requested to submit additional plans, corrections, specifications, or any other design criteria pertinent to the installation. The licensee’s construction plans should be based on the general requirements of the District and Bureau Design Criteria, which should apply, to most installations. However, some proposed construction, by its nature, necessitates other requirements. Discussion of the proposed construction prior to the preparation of final plans should prove helpful to the designer and expedite approval of the final plans. Designs involving major works must be prepared by or under the direct supervision of a New Mexico Professional Engineer.
An environmental evaluation of each license request for a right-of-way crossing or special use permit may be made by the Bureau to determine if the proposed installation has (1) significant adverse effects on public health and safety, (2) controversial or uncertain environmental effects, (3) cumulative significant environmental effects, (4) properties listed on eligible for the National Register of Historical Places, (5) listed or proposed to be listed endangered or threatened flora and fauna, and (6) potential violations of federal, State, or local laws. Following the evaluation and determination that the proposed action falls within the Bureau guidelines for a categorical exclusion to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process, the appropriate license will be issued.
Should the action not qualify for a categorical exclusion, then it will be the responsibility of the APPLICANT AND OR REQUESTOR to supply, at their expense, the necessary environmental informational assessment.
Contact the District, Engineering Department, prior to making definite plans for construction at P.O. Box 581, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87103, Phone (505) 247-0234.
Ray A. Gomez, P.E.
Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District