November 3, 2009

International Boundary and Water Commission
United States Section

USIBWC Awards Contract for Hidalgo Levee Work Funded by the Recovery Act The United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) has awarded a construction contract in the amount of $7,481,814 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 Sun Belt Builders of Sonoita, Arizona to construct one mile of levee improvements near the City of Hidalgo, Texas. The contractor was selected in accordance with a federal program targeting qualified small businesses located in distressed areas. This levee segment will start at the north end of the levee-wall previously constructed by Hidalgo County Drainage District #1 and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and will extend to the north and east to the bridge at 23rd Street. The contract also includes construction of a floodwall and flood gate at the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge.

In accordance with the contract, Sun Belt Builders will furnish all labor, materials, and equipment. The USIBWC is rehabilitating the levee to bring it 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. Recovery Act construction contracts were previously awarded for the Banker Floodway North Levee, Main Floodway, North Floodway, and the Arroyo Colorado North Levee.

“Construction is already underway on Recovery Act levee projects in the Lower Rio Grande Valley,” said U.S. Commissioner C.W. “Bill” Ruth of the International Boundary and Water Commission. “We are working to award these contracts quickly so we can put Americans back to work and make needed infrastructure improvements to help protect the Valley from floods.”

The USIBWC has awarded Recovery Act contracts totaling $73 million. The Recovery Act funding enables the USIBWC to accelerate work on its aging Rio Grande flood control system in Texas and New Mexico. 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 provides regular public updates on its planning and spending of Recovery Act funds at and An updated project schedule is available at

For more information:
Sally Spener