On Monday, the New Mexico Senate Finance Committee chaired by Sen. George Muñoz (D-Cibola, McKinley, and San Juan) will consider the radical S.B. 11 “Clean Fuel Standard Act,” which will result in a gas tax on the poor and middle classes. The bill is sponsored by Sen. Mimi Stewart (D-Bernalillo).
The bill puts extreme clean fuel standards on businesses that produce or import transportation fuels and fuels used in motor vehicles. The restrictions on these companies would force them to invest in costly upgrades to their fuel standards, meaning these costs would transfer to the consumers. The bill also adds vague and sweeping “enviro-justice” provisions to state law.
In California and Oregon, where clean fuel standards are already in place, there are already increased costs of up to 24 cents per gallon on gas, which directly hurts poor consumers.
In the bill’s previous committee, Senate Tax, Business, and Transportation, Sen. Craig Brandt (D-Sandoval) asked a question about the tax on the poor, to which Sen. Stewart got flustered. She said in a stern voice, “You know what gas costs in Europe? It costs $6-7 a gallon!” She said people drove smaller electric cars in the region and said she didn’t appreciate “the sky is falling” arguments regarding concerns attributed to her bill. Stewart also complained about the committee hearing nearing two hours long on her bill.
The New Mexico Oil and Gas Association (NMOGA), which took a neutral stance on Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s “mini” Green New Deal (The Energy Transition Act) is also taking a neutral stance on this bill. NMOGA dumped thousands into Democrat campaigns in 2018 and 2020.
Senate Finance Committee will convene at 1:00 p.m. (Or ½ hour after Floor Session ends) on Monday to discuss the fiscal implications of the bill, including its proposed $3,200,000 appropriation and other concerns, including the tax on the poor.
Call these Senators and ask them to oppose S.B. 11–the gas tax on the poor and the middle classes.
George Munoz (D), Chair, 505-397-8836, email@example.com
- Nancy Rodriguez (D), Vice Chair, 505-397-8844, firstname.lastname@example.org
- William E. Sharer (R), Ranking Member, 505-986-4381, email@example.com
- William F. Burt (R), 505-986-4366, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Pete Campos (D), 505-397-8818, email@example.com
- Jacob Candelaria (D), 505-397-8819, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Crystal R. Diamond (R), 505-986-4703, email@example.com
- Roberto “Bobby” Gonzales (D), 505-397-8825, Roberto.firstname.lastname@example.org
- Siah Correa Hemphill (D), 505-397-8821, email@example.com
- Jeff Steinborn (D), 505-397-8852, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Pat Woods (R), 986-4393, email@example.com
For public participation email SFC@nmlegis.gov. Sponsors and Experts have 15 minutes to present the bill followed by 10 minutes each for Proponents and Opponents. Send written comments to Sen.Fin.Comm@nmlegis.gov with your Name, Entity Represented, Bill #, For or Against, and a limit of 300 words or less. All Committee Members have access to written comments. The deadline is 12 hours prior to meeting time (1:00 a.m. on Monday, March 8, 2021). You will be contacted by our Zoom Operator with the virtual meeting instructions.