NM House Defeats Anti-Pollution Measure

New Mexico – The House has rejected a proposal being pushed by the Richardson administration that aimed to crack down on polluters.

The measure would have given state regulators the power to deny new air permits or revoke existing permits if companies have a track record of air quality violations.

State laws that govern water, solid wastes and hazardous materials already include a so-called "bad actor" clause, but the air quality act does not.

The measure was defeated on a 33-to-32 vote.

Opponents questioned why the bill was not reviewed by House judicial and energy committees before being presented to the full House. Some also argued that the measure would send a message to business and industry that New Mexico was an unfriendly place.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.