The state Senate Conservation Committee passed a community solar bill Thursday after a lengthy debate and multiple amendment proposals. Legislators have introduced various community solar bills over the past years, but the newest version of the bill was drafted by a task force that was created during the last session.

In the House, the Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee passed HB 76, sponsored by Democratic Rep. Christine Chandler of Los Alamos. The bill would amend the state’s Air Quality Control Act to allow the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) to deny a permit application or revoke an existing permit on the basis of an operator’s poor compliance history.

“This is a critical accountability bill, it’s critical for communities to point out bad actors to regulators,” NMELC’s Eric Jantz said. “It’s also critical for regulatory agencies to limit the ability of bad actors to get permits.”

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