October 19, 2009

International Boundary and Water Commission
United States Section

The United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) has awarded a construction contract in the amount of $20,988,112 for rehabilitation of Lower Rio Grande Flood Control Project levees funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The Recovery Act includes $220 million for USIBWC levee projects.

The contract was awarded to Ballenger Construction Company of Harlingen, Texas to construct 48 miles of levee improvements along the North Floodway and Arroyo Colorado in Hidalgo and Cameron Counties, Texas. The work will provide enhanced flood protection for the communities of Weslaco, Mercedes, La Villa, and La Feria. In accordance with the contract, Ballenger Construction Company will furnish all labor, materials, and equipment for levee construction. The USIBWC is raising levee height and making structural improvements to bring the levee into compliance with standards established by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for the 100-year flood. Construction is expected to be completed by September 2010. Construction contracts were previously awarded for the Banker North Floodway and the Main Floodway.

The Recovery Act funding enables the USIBWC to accelerate work on its aging Rio Grande flood control system in Texas and New Mexico to provide adequate flood protection for over three million U.S. residents. The purpose of the Recovery Act is to create and save jobs, jumpstart the economy, and build the foundation for long-term economic growth.

The USIBWC anticipates awarding all of its Recovery Act construction contracts for the Lower Rio Grande Valley by the end of 2009 and completing construction by the end of 2010. The USIBWC provides regular public updates on its planning and spending of Recovery Act funds at www.recovery.gov and www.state.gov/recovery. An updated project schedule is available at http://www.ibwc.gov/Files/LRG_Schedule.pdf.

For more information: Sally Spener