“Fracking in your backyard? Coming soon thanks to State Rep. Sarah Maestas Barnes”

No one thought we’d need laws prohibiting oil and gas drilling in our neighborhoods.  That was until an out-of-state oil company tried to drill for oil in a Rio Rancho residentially-zoned neighborhood.

Oklahoma company proposes to explore for oil near Rio Rancho …

Nov 12, 2015 – One of the nation’s largest oil producers has set its eyes on Sandoval County, with an application for exploratory drilling scheduled to be heard …

Local officials scrambled to block the move, drawing big crowds of voters who showed up to opposed the company’s plan.

But Sarah Maestas Barnes had a different idea.

Maestas Barnes has taken thirty-nine thousand eight hundred dollars in contributions from big oil and gas companies. She voted to eliminate local control and allow fracking wherever energy companies want, even in your backyard, without your permission.

The bill she voted for “invalidated” local zoning ordinances prohibiting drilling and fracking in neighborhoods.

Maestas Barnes Received $39,800 In Campaign Contributions From Oil & Gas Interests. According to the New Mexico Secretary of State, Maestas Barnes received $39,800 in campaign contributions from oil & gas interests. [New Mexico Secretary of State, accessed 6/28/16]

HB 366 “Would Have Invalidated Any County And Municipality Ordinance Relating To Oil And Gas Law, Including Zoning Ordinances – Removing The Critical Flexibility That Communities Need To Protect The Public Interest On A Local Scale.” According to Conservation New Mexico, “Counties and municipalities have the power to adopt local ordinances that best suit community needs and interests. To date, some communities have passed ordinances restricting certain aspects of oil and gas production in response to concerns of water contamination and health risks. HB 366 would have invalidated any county and municipality ordinance relating to oil and gas law, including zoning ordinances–removing the critical flexibility that communities need to protect the public interest on a local scale.” [Conservation New Mexico, accessed 6/28/16], Sarah Maestas Barnes voted YES.

HB 366 Would “Limit Local Control And Gives The State Oil Conservation Division And Oil Conservation Commission Exclusive Authority To Regulate Oil And Gas Extraction.” According to the Santa Fe New Mexican, “On a 37-28 vote, the House passed an amended version of House Bill 366, which limits local control and gives the state Oil Conservation Division and Oil Conservation Commission exclusive authority to regulate oil and gas extraction, well siting and processing except on tribal lands.” [Santa Fe New Mexican, 3/10/15]