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SB 149 PROHIBIT NEW FRACKING LICENSES

Current Location: SJC
Referrals: SCONC/SJC/SFC

[3] SCONC/SJC/SFC-SCONC [5] DP-SJC

SB 149 PDF  |  SB 149 FIR


Scheduled on - Date:  Time:   Location:

2/17/2021 [5]SCONC - Do Pass Senate Judiciary (SJC)
1/31/2021 [3] - Sent to location Senate Conservation (SCONC)
Synopsis:

 Senate Bill 149 (SB 149) prohibits the issuance of new hydraulic fracturing permits and creates reporting requirements.

Analysis:

 Senate Bill 149 (SB 149) prohibits the Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department (EMNRD) from issuing new hydraulic fracturing permits until 1 June 2025 when this section of the law will be repealed.

It adds a definition for hydraulic fracturing in Section 70-2-33 NMSA of the Oil and Gas Act.

SB 149 adds a new section to the Oil and Gas Act which will require certain state agencies to provide annual reports on relevant topics and to make recommendations, including funding requests, prior to November first of each year, to the governor and the appropriate legislative interim committees, including the committee that studies economic and rural development issues, the committee that studies Indian affairs, the legislative Health and Human Services Committee and the committee that studies water and natural resources.

SB 149 specifies the agencies and the items to be studied by each agency. It directs each agency to request funding annually to complete the research necessary for the reporting requirements in this subsection. The state agencies charged with making annual reports and recommendations on aspects of fracking under SB 149 are the EMNRD, the Department of Agriculture (NMAD); the Department of Environment (NMED); the Department of Health (DOH); Department of Transportation (DOT); the office of state engineer (OSE); the Indian Affairs Department (IAD); Workers’ Compensation Administration; and the Workforce Solutions Department (WSD).

Amendments:

Current Law:The Oil Conservation Division enforces regulations on the following: Well construction, casing, and cementing; protection of underground and surface water; reporting and disclosure of the types of fluids used in fracking and at what volume and a description of each chemical additive used in fracking; the maximum amount of surface and injecting pressure used during the process; spill prevention and clean-up As of March 2017, New Mexico regulations required fracking operators to complete and submit a list of chemicals used during the fracking process. Operators that consider a chemical or the concentration of a chemical to be a trade secret are allowed to withhold these chemicals from public disclosure and thus disclosure to potential competitors.

Bill Comments:
Position: Serious Concerns   Priority: High
ICBA/NM has serious concerns with this attempt to end issuances of fracking permits until 2025 (pending a review of environmental impacts) due to the potential fiscal impact on local and state revenues, plus workers in the oil and gas industry.

New Mexico's small business economy has been decimated by COVID-19 Pandemic and accompanying Public Health Orders. Layering a suspension of fracking permits on top of our fragile economy in light of the federal moratorium on fracking on federal lands could prove to be devastating for those businesses, workers, and local economies.