Thursday, February 21, 2013

NM Bill to Preempt County Oil & Gas Ordinances

A New Mexico bill introduced, then gone?  See below the email cut-n-paste from Kim Sorvig:

"Dear friends –
Well, it appears we did it!  For those who haven’t heard, Sen. Carlos Cisneros got so much negative publicity for his State Pre-emption bill (SB 463) that when interviewed on KVOT (Taos) yesterday, he said that the bill was “going nowhere” and “dead”, and that he had requested the chairman of the Conservation Committee (Peter Wirth) to “put it on hold.”

We still need to keep an eye on this.  A bill “on hold” is NOT entirely “dead” and can be re-introduced by the sponsor on request, at any time.  However, in this case, scheduling is Sen. Wirth’s call, completely.  I am confident that he will make sure the public knows about it if the bill arises from the grave.

Apparently NMOGA has emerged from the smoke-and-mirrors as the obvious origin of the bill, and they are pushing hard on Cisneros (and anybody else they can) to get their bill back in circulation.  But it is going to take a lot for Cisneros to reverse himself now.

This was a stealth bill – titled so you wouldn’t have a clue what it did or that it was about oil and gas.  Likely, Sen. Cisneros was not supposed to let any publicity happen.  We have had a chance to see how NMOGA goes about their business, which can help us next time around.

From everything I am hearing, it was your e-mails and calls that made this happen.  Thanks to Commissioner Liz Stefanics for the initial alert when the bill was introduced; to Nancy Stapp (KVOT) for publicizing citizen concerns and the great interview with Cisneros; to Pat Leahan of Las Vegas Peace and Justice for a brilliantly clear summary of the issues on an earlier Nancy Stapp show; to Gail Buono for her watchdog duty; and to all of you who took action and forwarded the information.

We have to be in this for the long term.  Pre-emption will be back.  But we made our voice heard. Let’s make that an annual event!

Kim Sorvig
PS: You can listen to both the Cisneros interview (scary or hysterical, depending on your mood) AND Pat Leahan’s excellent issues summary, at the following website.  The recordings will either stream or download.


Senate Bill 463 link:  click here>>>>

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