New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez (R), in office 14 days, faces charges filed on January 13 in the New Mexico Supreme Court by a Citizens Coalition on a writ of mandamus, represented by the New Mexico Environmental Law Center (NMELC). Governor Martinez, the Secretary of the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED), David Martin & Sandra Jaramillo of the State Records Center are accused of illegally terminating the process to codify and publish a greenhouse gas regulation in the State Register. Secretary Martin is being ordered to rescind Martinez's instructions to refuse to publish an adopted greenhouse gas cap regulation in the State Register, thus establishing the regulation as a statue of the state of New Mexico. The MELC's suit asserts Governor Martinez has no legal authority to unilaterally interfere with settled law which predates her term in office. Martinez's motives for deregulating New Mexico environmental law in return for funding from her oil & gas cronies have been discussed in a previous article.
On Friday, January 7, Marial Nanasi, the Executive Director of New Energy Economy, made a statement to The New Mexico Independent that they would file suit against Martinez as well. Nanasi said that Martinez had bullied John Martinez, director of the Administrative Law Division, into not publishing the regulation.
The governor is also attempting to eliminate an additional regulation restricting the degree to which the New Mexico diary industry can legally contaminate ground water with animal waste.
Here is some interesting & pertinent information provided by some Chaves County citizen's groups, none of which seems to bother Martinez much:
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there are 325,000 mature cows on dairy operations in New Mexico;
The average industrial dairy in the state has 2,400 cows, a higher average than any other state in the nation;
Dairy cows in Chavez County alone produce as much waste as the human populations of Los Angeles and Philadelphia combined;
The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) has found sixty three percent (63%) of the dairies in New Mexico are operating in violation of existing regulations:
Fifty seven percent (57%) of the facilities that NMED has evaluated have exceeded
groundwater quality standards for nitrates.
This number is alarming, particularly because ninety percent (90%) of New Mexico's population relies on groundwater for drinking water.
I guess the truckloads of cash Martinez got from diary interests over rides all this.