Action Needed on Chaco Canyon Protection Bill, Floor Debates Sat. & Sunday; One Billion Rising Sat. Noon

Today, we send out a Roundhouse Roundup to update you on important bills and an urgent call for email/calls and showing up for Chaco Saturday and Sunday. Also info on a new bill that would force the PRC to include the fiscal impact of coal plant closings on impacted communities. Saturday, you can attend Sen. hearing on Chaco protections from fracking and then attend One Billion Rising at noon.Before diving in, I want to acknowledge an important typo in yesterday’s post. I wrote that I was providing an “the edited letter from Speaker Egolf” when I had intended to write “unedited.” Quite obviously a big difference. To clarify, the letter from Speaker Egolf was not edited at all and appeared precisely as he had written it. Copy, Paste, Save.

Roundhouse Roundup

Alert. HB 325. New Bill to Force PRC to Include Fiscal Impact of Communities of Plant Closings.    House Minority Whip Rod Montoya, R-Farmington has introduced House Bill 325, which would require the state Public Regulation Commission to consider the economic effects on communities when deciding cases involving the shutdown of large power sources, such as the San Juan Generating Station. On the surface, this appears to be a good idea and publicly, at least, PNM is opposing the bill. But as I’ve written before the devil is in the details. There is no question that the financial impact of Four Corners and San Juan will be devastating without some bipartisan strategies to facilitate a just transition from coal to renewables and a means of supporting the local economies during that transition. As reported in the New Mexican: “The school district in Kirtland, New Mexico, gets about $37 million a year from the power plant,” Montoya said Thursday. “That’s about 45 percent of their tax base. Another 8 percent comes from the coal mine, so that’s over 50 percent.”  We will report more on this bill once we have had time to consult with allies, and while it is comforting that PNM officially opposes the bill, this could be a posture to lull advocates to sleep. Furthermore, Rep. Montoya does not have a history of introducing bills advancing social or environmental justice. And it is not reassuring that there has been no fiscal analysis of the bill or that the bill posting on the Roundhouse website contains not a single word. So permit my skepticism. Nonetheless, Speaker Egolf has assigned only one committee, House Judiciary, suggesting that this is on a fast track to the floor and I expect a hearing date will be scheduled very soon. We will keep you posted.

Title Name District Party Role
Representative Gail Chasey 18 D Chair
Representative Javier Martínez 11 D Vice Chair
Representative Eliseo Lee Alcon 6 D Member
Representative Cathrynn N. Brown 55 R Member
Representative Zachary J. Cook 56 R Member
Representative Jim Dines 20 R Member
Representative Brian Egolf 47 D Member
Representative Daymon Ely 23 D Member
Representative Nate Gentry 30 R Member
Representative Georgene Louis 26 D Member
Representative Matthew McQueen 50 D Member
Representative Greg Nibert 59 R Member
Representative William “Bill” R. Rehm 31 R Member

Chaco Canyon Landscape Preservation.SM 43/a  and H M80a.  Senate Memorial 43 seeks to protect and preserve tribal, cultural and historical sites and resources in the greater Chaco Canyon landscape. This memorial requests that the United States Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management and Bureau of Indian Affairs adhere to federal statutes, regulations and executive orders supporting the government-to-government relationships the United States has with the Native American nations, tribes, and pueblos of New Mexico. Senate Memorial 43 states that the United States Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management and Bureau of Indian Affairs desist from any leasing or issuance of permits without prior tribal consultation in the greater Chaco landscape, until the resource management plan amendment is complete in accordance with federal law and that no hydraulic fracturing within a thirty-mile radius of Chaco culture national historic park.  This hearing is important. The outcome will become the basis for federal legislation for some kind of protection. It was tabled yesterday after protests that native voices were not sufficiently included, and that there are serious health, environmental, cultural and indigenous concerns, as well as abundant opportunities for economic transition to a new energy economy. People from the most affected area will be testifying. They need and deserve our support for an amended version of the memorial.

  • SM43 and HM85 are good memorials in that they acknowledge the Greater Chaco Landscape as bigger than the protected boundaries of the National Park and affirm tribal sovereignty and consultation. We have suggested amendments to include protection for the PEOPLE living within the Greater Chaco region. Key points:
  • SM43 and HM85 as currently drafted focus solely on protection of Chacoan archeological sites. Past efforts to create 30-mile, 20-mile, and 10-mile boundaries around Chaco Park, as protection measures, have already been penetrated by horizontal oil and gas drilling.
  • Our requested amendments include public health and environmental justice protections. We need protection of the ancient AND living cultures and communities in Greater Chaco. We cannot leave out the real living PEOPLE in the Chaco Region. We must respect all existence and assure the health of sacred landscapes and the people living there are not left out of this bill.
  • 91% of the BLM Farmington Field area is already leased to oil and gas interests. More than 400 new fracking rigs have been approved using industrial drilling technologies that have not been thoroughly studied. Greater Chaco deserves a management process that respects the diverse tribal interests, the people, water, air, and sacred places connected with this area.

Hearing Times and Locations

SM 43a.  Saturday, Feb 10, 9am, Room 303.  Senate Indian and Cultural Affairs Committee, Speaking points and contact info for members of this committee are provided at the bottom of this post. The Chaco bill is the only bill on the agenda, so the hearing will begin promptly.

HM 80a.  Sunday, Feb 11, 10am. Room To Be Determined (we will let you know tomorrow). House State Government, Indian, and Veterans Affairs. Speaking points and contact information for Committee Members are provided at the end of the post.



Over the last 5 years we have come together every February to RISE and DANCE as an expression of our collective resistance and passion to end gender based violence!

This year, as we celebrate the escalation of resistance to sexual violence, harassment, and the systematic oppression of marginalized genders, we invite you to join us in this moment!

Let us demonstrate our strength and resilience by DANCING together in solidarity.

Capital High School students will lead the ‘Break the Chain’ Flashmob. No need to know the dance by heart, all mobility levels welcome!  Watch our video below from 2013 and be inspired.

“Being able to dance in a public space and reclaim that space … helps connect you and bring you back into your body, back into the world.”Jessica Montoya Trujillo, One Billion Rising Coordinator. Read more in this weeks issue of The Reporter‘s SFR Picks.

Bridging the Gap. A Citizen’s Discussion on Reforming the Democratic Party.  Saturday, Feb. 10, 6pm-8:30pm.  UNM Continuing Ed. Auditorium, 1634 University Blvd. NE, ABQ.  Opening by Hakim Bellamy, Former Albuquerque Poet Laureate. Guest speaker Karen Bernal Chair, Progressive Caucus, Democratic Party of California, Co-author of the Democratic Autopsy Report. Panel discussion Juan Abeyta of La Red Del Rio Abajo, Aleta “Tweety” Paisano-Suazo, Andrea Serrano of OLÉ. Moderator: Roberta Rael of Generation Justice. Suggested donation, $10. This will be an excellent discussion of how New Mexico can learn from California and their experience creating a strong Progressive Caucus within the CA state Democratic Party. Roxanne and I are founding members of Adelante, The Progressive Caucus of New Mexico, an emerging group of DPNM State Central Committee members seeking to form a progressive caucus within DPNM.

Town Hall March 4 from 2-4pm at the Center for Progress & Justice, 1420 Cerrillos Santa Fe.  For now our base is largely concentrated in Santa Fe, Espańola, Taos, and Albuquerque. But that is quickly changing as we expand outreach to build a statewide Rapid Response Network. Come to our Town Hall to learn more about our 2018-2019 Election and Legislative Strategy and to meet candidates for state office endorsed by Retake.  For now Andrea Romero (Dist. 46) and Stephen Fischmann (PRC vs. Sandy Jones) are confirmed. In addition to hearing from these and other candidates, we will discuss plans to challenge vulnerable GOP House Representatives and to build our Rapid Response Network. A full year of planning has gone into developing this strategy. But to implement it, we need you.  Click here to RSVP.


As one who completed the survey commented:  “I can’t believe all of these bills aren’t law.” But none are. The quote and the fact that few of these bills even got to the Governor’s desk, despite a Democratic majority in both chambers, is why it’s critically important that every one of our supporters complete the 2019 Legislative Priorities Survey and share it with others.  The survey will be the lynchpin for our 2018 election strategy and our 2019 legislative strategy. So please complete it today, if you haven’t already. Click the blue button above, left. It will take 10 minutes. We will share preliminary results at the Town Hall….but the good news is we have had almost 500 folks complete the survey so far with over 45 House Districts represented among respondents and 60% want to be part of the Response Network.  We launched our outreach effort to other parts of the state last night. If you want to get involved, please write to me at We could use more volunteers on our Roundhouse Activism Team,  to increase the impact the work of this heroic gang of ten.

 Chaco Speaking Points and Contact Info for Committee Members Hearing the Measures

For any readers who are represented by any of these legislators, it is particularly important for you to contact them today. For those who are not represented by these elected officials, calls and emails will still matter, but the most important thing you can do is to SHOW UP on Saturday and Sunday.
Speaking points are easy:
  • Protect Chaco Canyon;
  • Insist that the Bureau of Land Management consult with tribal representatives before issuing any future permits on land within 30 miles of Chaco.
SB 43. Tuesday, Feb 13, 9am. Room 303. House State Government, Indian, and Veterans Affairs.  Click blue link to get to phone, email, and Roundhouse Office #.
Name District Party Role
Senator John Pinto 3 D Chair
Senator Bill Tallman 18 D Vice Chair
Senator William E. Sharer 1 R Member
Senator Benny Shendo, Jr. 22 D Member
Senator Cliff R. Pirtle 32 R Ranking Member
House State Government, Indian and Veterans Affairs Committee (click blue link to get to phone, email, and Roundhouse Office #.
Title Name District Party Role
Representative Georgene Louis 26 D Chair
Representative Rodolpho “Rudy” S. Martinez 39 D Vice Chair
Representative Sharon Clahchischilliage 4 R Member
Representative Yvette Herrell 51 R Member
Representative D. Wonda Johnson 5 D Member
Representative Derrick J. Lente 65 D Member
Representative William “Bill” R. Rehm 31 R Member
Representative Dennis J. Roch 67 R Member
Representative G. Andrés Romero 10 D Member

Categories: Personal & Collective Action

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3 replies

  1. Keep Chaco Canyon Sacred! It’s our culture and right to have it preserved. Once it is gone it is gone permanently. We owe it to our past, present, and future.

  2. I read someplace, and I can’t find it now, a date for your next meeting in March. Please remind me of the date.



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