Spaceport Bill Passes

Mar 11, 2013

Credit Spaceport America

The Legislature enters the final week of its 60-day session with many major issues still unresolved, but lawmakers have given final approval to a proposal to help New Mexico develop a commercial space travel industry.

Legislation to limit the liability of spacecraft manufacturers and their suppliers is heading to Republican Gov. Susana Martinez after clearing a final hurdle in the Legislature on Monday. The governor supports the measure.

While the proposal was pending in the Legislature, the state had placed on hold its negotiations with space tourism company Virgin Galactic for a long-term lease at New Mexico's spaceport, which has cost taxpayers more than $200 million.

The measure won final approval when the House unanimously agreed to a Senate-passed version of the liability shield proposal.

The legislative session ends Saturday.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.