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New Mexico finishes 2014 with near normal precipitation as drought eases

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ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico — New Mexico recorded near normal amounts of rain and snow in 2014, and officials say forecasts are pointing to the drought easing up by May.

A panel of state and federal weather forecasters and water managers met Tuesday to discuss the drought. They say the latest map shows nearly two-thirds of New Mexico are dealing with moderate drought conditions or worse.

That's better than the 80 percent reported at this time last year.

The state received 95 percent of its normal precipitation last year. The most rain fell in far southeastern New Mexico near the Texas border.

In the last month, snowpack levels have increased significantly in the southwestern mountains and only slightly in the high elevations of north-central New Mexico.

Another winter storm is expected to bring more moisture later this week.

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