NMELC in the News

Controversy Swirls Around Santolina Water Plan Delay

In the end commission newcomer, Democrat Steven Michael Quezada sided with the county’s two Republican commissioners in favor of letting the development proceed without a water agreement in place. New Mexico Environmental Law Center attorney Jamie Park argued against letting the project go forward without a water agreement. “We were not surprised,” Park said. “We […]

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Santolina project given more time to prepare water plan

Despite impassioned pleas from dozens of residents, Bernalillo County commissioners are giving Santolina developers more time to provide a water plan for the 21-square-mile development southwest of Interstate 40 and 118th Street… Jaimie Park, an attorney with the New Mexico Environmental Law Center, who argued on behalf of SouthWest Organizing Project and the other Santolina […]

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Santolina project given more time to prepare water plan

Despite impassioned pleas from dozens of residents, Bernalillo County commissioners are giving Santolina developers more time to provide a water plan for the 21-square-mile development southwest of Interstate 40 and 118th Street… Jaimie Park, an attorney with the New Mexico Environmental Law Center, who argued on behalf of SouthWest Organizing Project and the other Santolina […]

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Pipeline plan exposes dated water laws

The New Mexico State Engineer’s Office has denied the request twice before on the grounds that there was no buyer to put the water to beneficial use, but the ranch is back for a third try, this time before a new state engineer. The New Mexico Environmental Law Center is representing local ranchers and the […]

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Santolina zone change rejected

“We respectfully disagree with the judge’s analysis relating to the master plan,” said Douglas Meiklejohn, the executive director and an attorney with the New Mexico Environmental Law Center. But he added that her ruling on the zone change decision is a “big victory for fairness and due process.”

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Santolina Foes Get Partial Court Victory

Attorney Douglas Meiklejohn, who represented Santolina opponents in the case, said he disagreed with Franchini’s decision regarding the master plan, but was happy that she struck down the zoning change. “We respectfully disagree with the judge’s analysis as to the master plan, but we believe that the determination that our clients were denied fairness in […]

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Magdalena school board amends water grab protest

“Mr. Chambers had signed the petition in the name of Magdalena Schools and the problem is only the board can enter into a lawsuit for the school, not the superintendent. And this is a lawsuit,” Jaramillo said. “The concern by the school board at the time on Monday was...

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Bill to bring back oil and gas pollution penalty moves forward

Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency can authorize states to take over certain regulatory duties. Under that program, states must be able to assess penalties against companies that pollute water. But in New Mexico, the state’s Oil Conservation Division (OCD) hasn’t been able to do that for years.

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Top 10 Environmental Issues to Watch in 2017

Environmentally hostile administrations will be making decisions about New Mexico’s communities and resources this year. Coming to the White House is a president who likely will set back federal environmental protections by years, if not decades …

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Questions remain as company seeks to re-open long-defunct copper mine

Now, New Mexico Copper Corporation, a subsidiary of THEMAC Resources Group, is trying to reopen a copper mine that ran for just a few months in the early 1980s. And some residents say they don’t want that to happen…NMELC attorney Jaimie Park said the draft study didn’t include adequate baseline data for wildlife and endangered […]

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Ex-N.M. official given second ‘Toxic Turkey’ award

Lawyer Ryan Flynn got his first “Toxic Turkey” award in 2013 while head of the New Mexico Environment Department. He got his second award Sunday, four months after leaving government to become president of the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association. The New Mexico Environmental Law Center bestowed the “Toxic Turkey” at its annual donor […]

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Reader View: Martinez’s record: On the environment, it’s bad

Recently, it was quietly announced that Ryan Flynn, who quit his position as state environment secretary in August, would be heading the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association. Gov. Susana Martinez appointed Flynn — then a tax lawyer — as New Mexico Environment Department general counsel in 2011 and elevated him to secretary in 2013…Gov. […]

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