By Dahr Jamail, Truthout
“The 2013 session was yet another mile marker in the Martinez administration’s ongoing assault on the laws that preserve the air, land, and water on which all New Mexicans depend,” the group’s website states. “Despite another year of severe drought and catastrophic wildfires, these issues didn’t warrant a single mention in the Governor’s State of the State Address on the opening day of the session. Instead, her attention was focused on tax breaks for corporations – big incentives for some of the very companies whose pollution comes at a distressing cost to New Mexican families.”
The Martinez administration has an abysmal record when it comes to protecting the environment, and has not supported one measure to protect clean air and water. According to CVNM:
Members of her administration routinely – and quite aggressively – opposed measures designed to protect our water supply. One example is Rep. Emily Kane‘s HB 259, which would have ensured that New Mexico could recover damages from polluters who contaminate the state’s groundwater. Another example is HB 429, sponsored by Rep. Georgene Louis, which would have helped individuals being harmed by unlawful pollution, such as hazardous waste threatening the water supply of their domestic wells. Yet another was Rep. Gail Chasey‘s HB 286, which would have toughened the penalties for oil and gas companies who pollute our water – increasing fines from the current levels, which were set way back in 1935. None of these bills passed the House of Representatives. Had Gov. Martinez decided to make clean water a priority, there is little doubt that any of these bills could have passed with her support. Instead, she chose to oppose them all – denying New Mexicans crucial water protections in a time of crisis.