by Christie Chisholm, Weekly Alibi, May 19, 2011
On Earth Day, one state commission took the first step toward rolling back energy-efficient building requirements.
The group is the Construction Industries Commission, and the legislation in question is the New Mexico Energy Conservation Code, adopted late last year after more than 12 months of weekly open meetings and five public hearings. During its April 22 meeting, the commission voted unanimously to start the process of repealing the standards. Public hearings are scheduled in four cities on the same day, June 2.
The commission is the same entity that unanimously approved the rules last year, but it has new members appointed by Gov. Susana Martinez. Some believe the decision to reverse the regulations stems from the also-governor-appointed Small Business-Friendly Task Force, which shares two members with the commission. The task force’s position: State rules shouldn’t be more demanding than national standards.