CCAE signs onto initial stipulation, Governor endorses efforts

(Albuquerque, NM) – On Tuesday, Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) and Avangrid filed a stipulation in its merger application before the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (NMPRC) with the New Mexico Attorney General, Western Resource Advocates, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 611, Dine Citizens Against Ruining Our Environment, Nava Education Project, San Juan Citizens Alliance, and To Nizhoni Ani.

“We see other parties now looking at the enhanced customer, employee and environmental benefits of our stipulation to the proposed merger and we welcome the Coalition for Clean Affordable Energy to the growing list of signatories.” Pat Vincent Collawn, Chairman, President and CEO of PNM Resources, the parent company of PNM.

Coalition for Clean Affordable Energy (CCAE) has signed on to the Stipulation.

Today CCAE signed on as a signatory to the stipulation.

“This agreement provides major economic and environmental benefits to New Mexicans, with Avangrid committing to provide much-needed assistance to low-income customers through improved access to electricity service as well as dramatically increased energy efficiency programs. These low-income provisions, coupled with economic development funding, financial assistance to impacted indigenous communities, and job creation commitments, set a path forward for this merger that we are pleased to support,” said Tammy Fiebelkorn, NM Representative for Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP), a member of CCAE.

Governor supports the stipulation process.

Governor Michele Lujan Grisham weighed in on the Stipulation efforts. “I’m glad the parties have come together to provide additional relief for New Mexico ratepayers while continuing to transition to a clean energy future for all New Mexicans,” said Governor Lujan Grisham.

Others are also applauding the stipulation:

“Our discussions with Avangrid have demonstrated the company’s commitment to comprehensively address climate change and its willingness to support policies that will benefit the economy and environment in New Mexico communities and beyond,” said Steve Michel, deputy director of Western Resource Advocates’ clean energy program.

“The legacy of pollution and generational harm to front-line communities from coal-fired energy generation cannot be solved overnight, but this stipulation represents a pathway to a different future, including ongoing dialogue with impacted communities and resources to help the region transition,” said Kyle Tisdel, attorney with the Western Environmental Law Center. “I applaud Avangrid, PNM, and Attorney General Balderas for listening and responding to Native voices and for their commitment to a more sustainable future.”

Recap of benefits under the stipulation.

If approved by the NMPRC, the agreement among the parties will bring over $250 million in benefits to New Mexico. Below are some of the key enhancements of the stipulation:

Customer Rate Benefits:

  • Customer rate benefits of $73 million (including an additional $10 million added to low income energy efficiency benefits)

Economic Development Benefits:

  • Economic development benefits approximating $200 million

Enhanced Environmental Benefits:

  • Create a Carbon Reduction Task Force and a new Chief Environmental Officer.

Maintaining Current Jobs, Low-Income Programs, and Charitable Leadership:

  • The stipulation commits to maintaining PNM jobs, with no reduction of wages or benefits to for a minimum of 3 years following the transaction.

Continue low income assistance programs:

  • The merger commitments ensure that the benefits PNM currently provides to its customers and communities in the past through its PNM Good Neighbor Fund or charitable giving will not be reduced, with a similar expectation for the PNM Resources Foundation’s separate charitable activities.

Local Management:

  • PNM will continue to be managed locally.

Financing and Ownership:

  • As stated in the original merger application, none of the merger costs will come from customers, and PNM and PNM Resources will not take on any new debt in conjunction with the proposed transaction.

PNM knows this merger is the right thing for our customers, employees, and our state. And we Stand ready to work with our parties to explain the enhanced benefits of the stipulation.

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