The United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) has awarded a construction contract in the amount of $18,898,768 for rehabilitation of Lower Rio Grande Flood

Control Project levees in Texas 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, Inc. of Sonoita,

Arizona to construct 13 miles of levee improvements along the Rio Grande in Hidalgo County from Lateral A to Retamal Dam. The work will provide enhanced flood protection for the area along the river from east of the City of Hidalgo to south of Donna. The USIBWC is raising levee height in compliance with standards established by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to protect against the 100-year river flood.

Construction is expected to be completed by January 2011.

Construction contracts were previously awarded for Lower Rio

Grande Flood Control Project levees along the Banker Floodway, Main Floodway, North Floodway, Arroyo Colorado, and along the Rio Grande near the City of Hidalgo. Additional improvements along the river levee were previously completed by Hidalgo County and by USIBWC crews.

“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. “I am pleased we were able to award these contracts, get people

back to work, and fix our deficient levees.”

To date, the USIBWC has awarded $144 million in Recovery Act

contracts, including the contracts described above and others for levee work in Doña Ana County, New Mexico and El Paso and Hudspeth Counties, Texas. The Recovery Act funding enables the USIBWC to accelerate work on its aging Rio Grande flood control system. The purpose of the Recovery Act is to create and save jobs, promote economic recovery, and invest in infrastructure that will provide long-term economic benefits.

The USIBWC provides regular public updates on its planning and

spending of Recovery Act funds at and A project schedule is available at A map of completed and planned levee improvements is available upon request.