Report: TrumpCare raises NM premiums $2,521 (unless you are rich), Pearce’s constituents most likely to lose health care

New Mexico health insurance premiums are expected to rise an average of $2,521 – unless you make twice the state’s per-capita income, in which case you get a refund. Although Republicans in Congress rush to repeal Obamacare and replace it with TrumpCare before the analysis is complete, some data is already available.  Two new reports released this week show the impact on the average American (and New Mexican). If you’re a millionaire, the AHCA gives you $50K. If you’re poor, it costs you $1,420
“The typical family making less than $10,000 will lose $1,420 if the Republican health care plan passes, a cut that amounts to almost one-third of their income.

Session 2017 Recap: How Did Progress for Women Do?

Reproductive rights are human rights, and New Mexicans know it. While in places like Ohio, where a lawmaker referred to women as “hosts” and proposed a bill where fathers must approve of abortions, the women of New Mexico and their families are the big winners of the 2017 New Mexico Legislature proving that all aspects of a woman’s reproductive life is critical, even the right to a safe and legal abortion. After a battle of words, often late into the night, champions of women’s health fought to expand the rights of women across the state now wait on the final verdicts as the bills pile up on the Governor’s desk. Riding the momentum of the Women’s March on Washington, the Respect NM Women Campaign was launched on February 7 to champion three bills that would expand the reproductive rights of women.  

HB473, the hearing to decriminalize abortion, is underway.

Session 2017 Recap: How Did Gun Violence Prevention Legislation Do?

Over the duration of the 2017 regular session, we fought to create laws that would result in keeping guns out of dangerous hands. In the end, major legislation that would have changed the way that people purchase firearms by requiring background checks for all gun sales, had its language changed and eventually met its fate in the House Judiciary Committee. However, not all gun violence prevention legislation reached the same result.

PNM looks to close coal-fired San Juan plant (if they get a rate increase from the PRC)

Santa Fe, NM –  PNM is beginning the process to plan for a permanent shutdown of the coal-fired San Juan Generation Station by 2022. The SJGS is responsible for generating nearly 60% of the state’s power, but it relies on coal power and a nearby coal mine PNM purchased last year to support it. PNM proposed two scenarios for future power production: one to keep the plant in operation after 2022, the other to close it and shift to a larger renewable portfolio.  But, PNM added a catch: the scenarios supporting closing the plant are tied to PNM’s latest rate increase request to the PRC which asks for electricity rates to increase by as much as 14% for New Mexico customers. “I want to stress that is only a preliminary finding regarding our San Juan Generating Station,” Vincent-Collawn told the Albuquerque Journal.

Thousands of petitions delivered to state legislators demanding background checks for gun sales

A few weeks ago, ProgressNow got word that the NRA was flooding New Mexico legislators’ inboxes with out of state emails – so we decided to fire back. And today, with help from the New Mexico chapter of Moms Demand Action, we handed in thousands of petitions signed by New Mexicans who support background checks for gun sales legislation. As the legislature winds to an end this upcoming Friday, work-days and work-weeks are getting longer, with hearings lasting into the night and on weekends. The House Judiciary Committee, the current place for gun violence prevention legislation, was set to meet today until a last minute change pushed the meeting to this upcoming Monday, 3/13, at 1:30. So…You guessed it!

[Watch] Ben Ray Lujan: we’ll stay here “as long as it takes”

New Mexico Congressman Ben Ray Lujan took center stage this week in the effort to stop the repeal of Obamacare as he endured almost 30 hours of marathon Congressional hearings set by House Republicans. Some time after hour 27, Cong. Lujan took to Facebook to remind Americans that Democrats held 79 different bi-partisan hearings on the components of Obamacare before voting on the bill. Paul Ryan and Republicans have promised to pass their bill in just two weeks and set up two committee hearings stacked with solid conservative votes to pass it quickly. Lujan sits on one of those committees – the House Energy & Commerce Committee – where Democrats noted that Republicans moved forward to pass their bill without a fiscal assessment and against the objections of the AARP, a cohort of hospitals and health care providers and a growing group of Republican Congresspersons.

Methane actions front and center at State Legislature

Today at the Roundhouse, lawmakers, environmental experts, and a local ranchers held a press conference on the Obama-era methane rule and Gov. Susana Martinez’s efforts to roll back the rule in New Mexico.Watch the event from our Facebook Live feed:

Speakers included:

Speaker Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe)
Sen. Benny Shendo Jr. (D-Jemez Pueblo)
Rep. Georgene Louis (D-Albuquerque)
along with Jon Goldstein of the Environmental Defense Fund,
Don Schreiber, a Rio Arriba County rancher and gas lease land holder
and Patrick von Bargen of the Center for Methane Emissions Solutions. Following the press conference, a crowd of concerned citizens – including members of Conservation Voters NM, The Sierra Club’s Rio Grande Chapter and ProgressNowNM – marched up to the fourth floor and hand-delivered petitions to the Governor’s office to tell her that New Mexico needs the methane rule, and ProgressNow New Mexico was there to capture all of the action. The methane rule is a regulation implemented by the Bureau of Land Management that requires oil and natural gas producers to fix leaks and update equipment to prevent methane from flaring into the atmosphere. Read more: What is the Methane Rule? Last month, however, Gov. Martinez wrote a letter to U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan to urge Congress to repeal the rule.