PRC ties to PNM could affect power plant’s fate

Public Service Company of New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – The state commission considering PNM’s plan to close half of a coal-fired power plant is being accused of violating state law.

According to the Santa Fe New Mexican, three members on the Public Regulation Commission used to work for the company and still have financial ties to the utility.

State law prohibits commissioners or employees of the commission from having a financial interest in companies they regulate.

Bruno Carrara, the commission’s electrical engineering bureau chief, owned 300 shares of stock in PNM when the hearing began, but sold the stock after the issue was raised.

The commission is expected to rule in the next few months on whether PNM can close half of the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station and replace it with a mix of nuclear, natural gas and solar power.

The closure would mean significant price increases for customers.

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