Good Afternoon, New Mexico Activists:

We have new hearings to tell you about on Mon., Tues. and Weds: Water Security Planning, Brackish Water Reuse (NO!), and Clean Future Act (needs amendments). Don’t forget to join us on Weds., March 8 for our weekly Legislative Huddle, 6-7 p.m. Click here to register.

NEW: Tomorrow, Mon., March 6, at 1:30 p.m., Room 322, Senate Finance will hear SB 337 Water Security Planning Act. This is the highest priority water bill this session. It would establish a long-term framework for state-funded regional water security planning – community driven, science-based, and focused on resilience, sustainability, and equity. You’ll find talking points in the bill title above (from Middle Rio Grande Water Advocates and NM Water Ambassadors). Please email committee members today and call in the morning to urge them to vote “YES” on SB 337. (See contact list below. You can send one email and make one phone call for this and the next bill: YES on SB 337; NO on SB 493.)

NEW: On Weds., March 8, 1:30 p.m., Room 322, Senate Finance will hear SB 493 Brackish Water Reuse. This bill passed Senate Conservation (SCONC) on Friday, unfortunately. Senators Hamblen, Pope, and Sedillo Lopez voted against it, but Senators Stefanics and Cervantes joined the Republicans to pass the bill 4:3. We’re not sure what might happen in Senate Finance — SB 493 is Senator Muñoz’s bill, and he chairs the committee. But it’s worth urging committee members to vote “NO.” We don’t have talking points, but you’ll find a link to Paul’s March 1 blog on SB 493 here. If the intent was to simply desalinate naturally occurring brackish water in our state, we might be in support. But at the Friday SCONC hearing, neither the sponsor (Muñoz) nor expert witnesses would deny that “brackish” includes toxic water from mining and fracking, aka “produced” water. We need to fight this bill! Please call and email committee members to urge them to vote “NO” on SB 493.

Instructions are the same for both hearings: Offer public comment in person at the hearing or via Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81696207177. To Zoom via telephone call: 1 669 444 9171. Meeting ID: 816 9620 7177. To submit written comments or to register to speak using Zoom, please email SFC.Zoom@nmlegis.gov. Or watch the Webcast at this link.

Senate Finance Committee

  • Chair: George K. Munoz (D). District 4 (Cibola, McKinley & San Juan). Room 325B, 986-4371. Email: george.munoz@nmlegis.gov
  • Vice Chair: Nancy Rodriguez (D). District 24 (Santa Fe). Room 325A, 986-4264. Email: nancy.rodriguez@nmlegis.gov
  • Ranking Member: William E. Sharer (R). District 1 (San Juan). Room 415H, 986-4381. Email: bill@williamsharer.com
  • Member: William F. Burt (R). District 33 (Chaves, Lincoln & Otero). Room 415C, 986-4366. Email: bill.burt@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Pete Campos (D). District 8 (Colfax, Guadalupe, Harding, Mora, Quay, San Miguel & Taos). Room 302B, 986-4311. Email: pete.campos@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Crystal R. Diamond (R). District 35 (Doña Ana, Hidalgo, Luna & Sierra). Room 414C, 986-4703. Email: crystal.diamond@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Roberto “Bobby” J. Gonzales (D). District 6 (Los Alamos, Rio Arriba, Santa Fe & Taos). Room 218A, 986-4362. Email: roberto.gonzales@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Siah Correa Hemphill (D). District 28 (Catron, Grant & Socorro). Room 416F, 986-4863. Email: siah.hemphill@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Michael Padilla (D). District 14 (Bernalillo). Room , . Email: michael.padilla@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Jeff Steinborn (D). District 36 (Doña Ana). Room 302A, 986-4862. Email: jeff.steinborn@nmlegis.gov
  • Member: Pat Woods (R). District 7 (Curry, Quay & Union). Room 415D, 986-4393. Email: pat.woods@nmlegis.gov

Bulk email: “William F. Burt” <bill.burt@nmlegis.gov>, “Pete Campos” <pete.campos@nmlegis.gov>, “Crystal R. Diamond” <crystal.diamond@nmlegis.gov>, “Roberto “Bobby” J. Gonzales” <roberto.gonzales@nmlegis.gov>, “Siah Correa Hemphill” <siah.hemphill@nmlegis.gov>, “George K. Munoz” <george.munoz@nmlegis.gov>, “Michael Padilla” <michael.padilla@nmlegis.gov>, “Nancy Rodriguez” <nancy.rodriguez@nmlegis.gov>, “William E. Sharer” <bill@williamsharer.com>, “Jeff Steinborn” <jeff.steinborn@nmlegis.gov>, “Pat Woods” <pat.woods@nmlegis.gov>

NEW: Tues., March 7, 8:30 a.m., Room 311, Senate Conservation will hear SB 520 Clean Future Act (listed as one of the dummy bills, “Public Peace, Health, Safety & Water.”) We want to alert you about this bill today, but we’ll have more information for you tomorrow. Here’s the situation:

YUCCA (Youth United 4 Climate Crisis Action), with the No False Solutions (NFS) coalition, has done a deep dive into SB 520. They feel the bill has some positive elements, but it needs improvement. YUCCA, NFS and their allies are trying to get some amendments, most importantly removing references to net-zero and offsets. Dialog with bill sponsors has been positive, however we want committee members to know our concerns. This March 1 article from Capital and Main outlines why these offset mechanisms should not be included in climate policy: “U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres watched such claims [net zero] falling like droplets from an atmospheric river at the climate negotiations last year and cautioned journalists to be wary of ‘net-zero commitments [that] have varying degrees of rigor and loopholes wide enough to drive a diesel truck through. We must have zero tolerance for net-zero greenwashing.” A U.N. report called out many “net zero” pledges as what it terms “‘dishonest climate accounting.’”

Allies will meet on Monday to discuss this bill and to develop a coordinated communication. We will send out an Alert Monday afternoon with more specific amendments to be sought. Stay tuned. If you have time today, please contact SCONC members to say that while the bill has merit, you feel it should be amended to remove all references to net zero and carbon credits. We’ll have the complete list of amendments for you on Monday afternoon, so you can write then, or write again if you’ve already done so.

Offer public comment in person at the hearing or via Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82404382748. Zoom via telephone at 1 669 900 9128. Meeting ID: 824 0438 2748. To submit written comments, please email SCONC.Zoom@nmlegis.gov. Or watch the Webcast at this link.

Senate Conservation Committee            

Bulk email: “Joseph Cervantes” <joseph.cervantes@nmlegis.gov>, “David M. Gallegos” <david@ramirezandsonsinc.com>, “Carrie Hamblen” <carrie.hamblen@nmlegis.gov>, “Steven P. Neville” <steven.neville@nmlegis.gov>, “Harold Pope” <harold.popejr@nmlegis.gov>, “Gregg Schmedes” <gregg.schmedes@nmlegis.gov>, “Antoinette Sedillo Lopez” <a.sedillolopez@nmlegis.gov>, “William P. Soules” <bill.soules@nmlegis.gov>, “Elizabeth “Liz” Stefanics” <lstefanics@msn.com>

With just two weeks to go,we need to keep up the pressure to get things done. Thank you for all the great work you do to support good legislation in our state! This is what democracy is all about.

In Gratitude & Solidarity,

Roxanne and Paul

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