Raising the royalty cap for our oil and gas is REALLY important for New Mexico

With less than a week to go until the 2019 Legislative session there’s already been a lot of exciting movement from New Mexico’s new (mostly) progressive majority at the state level. Commissioner of Public Lands Stephanie Garcia Richard made a big splash today with an Executive Order banning wildlife killing contests on state lands. That’s pretty great news! But Garcia Richard made
another announcement this week that we’re excited about as well: A
planned bill to increase the cap on royalties paid from oil and gas companies
from wells on state lands from 20 percent to 25 percent. What does that mean?

Two days before anniversary of Aztec shooting, NRA warns NM members of “attacks” on gun rights

In a grossly insensitive and inflammatory letter on Wednesday, the National Rifle Association warned its New Mexico members to “Expect Unprecedented Attacks On Your Second Amendment Rights During The 2019 Legislative Session.” 

This letter came two days before today’s one-year anniversary of the fatal, shooting at Aztec High School; an actual attack that left two young people dead. 

So, who’s really under “attack?” New Mexico gun owners? No, they’re not. Common sense gun regulations are supported by the majority of voters. We know that by the results of this year’s elections.

Healthcare is NOT a crime- sign our petition NOW!

Healthcare is not a crime. But, all over the country, Republican-led state legislatures are working hard to criminalize pregnant people and doctors when it comes to abortion. In New Mexico, we can hold our own beliefs about abortion but respect that personal decision as something for our family members and neighbors to make for themselves. We keep our doors and hearts open to those around us and across the country- those whose access to safe and legal abortion is being stripped away. Join ProgressNow New Mexico as we work with our partners at the Respect New Mexico Women Coalition to repeal the outdated criminal statute in order to protect access to safe and legal abortion by signing on to our petition now- click here to sign.

Thanksgiving Is A Time For Educating Ourselves

In these political times, so much gets lost in the rhetoric and the sound bites. There are so many marginalized groups that are negatively impacted by the policies of the Trump Administration, putting real lives in danger. The lives that are not talked about too much in the media are Native lives. Thanks to Congresswoman-elect Debra Haaland (NM-1) and Congresswoman-elect Sharice Davids (KS-3), the concerns that Native peoples have will be amplified, one of them being blood quantum’s place in politics; blood quantum, or how “Native” or “Indian” one is, determines whether or not a Native person will have access to certain benefits the federal government has agreed to provide Native peoples in exchange for land and other natural resources as well as access to their own natural resources. It is not a coincidence that more tribes have needed to reconsider their blood quantums and tribal constitutions.

ProgressNow NM joins dozens of statewide orgs with ads supporting new Gov in ending methane waste

Today ProgressNow New Mexico joined with almost 30 (29!) New Mexico organizations in congratulating Governor-elect Michelle Lujan Grisham in a full-page ad in the Santa Fe New Mexican and in thanking her for her commitment to fighting methane waste in the state through comprehensive statewide rules. As noted in the ad, New Mexico oil and gas producers waste as much as $240 MILLION EVERY YEAR in natural gas (mostly made up of methane) that is either leaked or purposely flared or vented during production. That’s enough natural gas to heat EVERY home in New Mexico for a year. But, besides the actual loss of our valuable resources, that waste is also hurting our families in the state in more ways than one:

Wasted methane means wasted money- All that natural gas that producers aren’t capturing or are purposefully burning is costing the tax-payers of New Mexico over $27 MILLION every year in lost royalties. The oil and gas lobby loves to talk about how much they contribute back to the state, so why are they sending literal millions of dollar up in smoke every year?

New Mexico Elections Show the Rest of the Country How It’s Done

Barry Blitt’s New Yorker cover, “Welcome To Congress”, has gone viral and it’s no surprise why- the cover shows Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14), Ilhan Omar (MN-5), and Sharice Davids (Ho-Chunk Nation) (KS-3) with a crowd of brown people behind them at a door, about to walk into a room full of white men. This is a bittersweet moment for people of color across the country- until the late 1960s, ALL American citizens were not able to vote. The legal and physical battles fought to vote were (and are) hard, bloody, and racist. In New Mexico, we have taken Blitt’s concept to the max- the Roundhouse will see a lot of newcomers, mostly women of color and including the first ever Muslim to serve in the legislature, taking their seat on the House Floor. New Mexico has a long history of racism and sexism, especially during the time New Mexico was vying for statehood.

Too Much At Stake To Not Vote

There’s plenty of reasons people use to excuse themselves from not voting. But in case you need a reminder of why every vote, and especially your vote is important, we simply need to look at our state’s national rankings on everything from education to healthcare. That’s right, we are last in everything! In fact, New Mexico was recently ranked 51st in the nation in terms of our level of political engagement.   

A highly engaged electorate that participates in the democratic process and holds our elected officials accountable is critical to having a well-functioning democracy.