Asset management plan completed in Albuquerque

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, May 3, 2011 -- After three years and an effort spanning the entire organization, the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority has completed its comprehensive 2011 Asset Management Plan...

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, May 3, 2011 -- After three years and an effort spanning the entire organization, the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority has completed its comprehensive 2011 Asset Management Plan. Approved at last month's Water Authority Board meeting, the plan identifies infrastructure needs and calls for increased resources for system rehabilitation.

"In terms of planning for asset management, we are now at the leading edge where water utilities are concerned," said Art De La Cruz, Chair of the Water Authority Board. "This plan will take the guesswork out of system maintenance and rehabilitation so we can minimize the risk of asset and system failure and make the right decisions at the right time for the right cost and for the right reasons."

Plan development began with cataloguing all the Water Authority's assets in a database. More than 200,000 assets, valued at some $5 billion, were identified and then prioritized by risk according to the consequences and probability of failure. Assisting with the plan were a number of consultants, Water Authority staff and an internal Asset Management Steering Committee.

The newly completed plan will allow the Authority to "strategically focus our resources on the highest-risk areas," De La Cruz said. "It's a road map for future asset funding requirements to deliver the expected level of service to our customers."

Those funding requirements are expected to increase in order to address the maintenance and rehabilitation backlog identified in the Asset Management Plan.

"We need to be investing an average of $76 million per year in rehabilitation and special projects to meet our renewal requirements over the coming decades," De La Cruz said. "Right now we're spending about $41 million, so our plan is add an additional $3 million dollars per year starting in 2017 for 10 years to meet our rehabilitation needs."

The Water Authority Board also has approved the 2012-2021 Decade Plan, a capital planning document to identify projects and proposed spending over the next 10 years. This plan incorporated the data and analysis from the Asset Management Plan in terms of identifying and prioritizing capital projects.

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