New Mexico Public Regulation Commission

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New Mexico

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The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission is an elected five member board in the New Mexico state government responsible for regulation of public utilities, transportation companies, transmission and pipeline companies, insurance companies and other public companies.

Current officeholder

The current Chairman is Patrick H. Lyons. Lyons, a Republican, was first elected in 2010. Theresa Becenti-Aguilar serves as vice-chair.

Commissioners include Jason A. Marks, Douglas J. Howe and Ben L. Hall.

Jerome D. Block resigned as commissioner on October 6, 2011 after pleading guilty to two felonies - credit card fraud and identity theft of another agency employee. Gov. Susana Martinez chose Howe as a replacement on November 7, 2011.[1] In November 2012 voters will elect somebody to represent the district for the following four years.[2]


The state Constitution addresses the creation of the Public Regulation Commission in Article XI, Corporations Other Than Municipal.

Under Article XI, Section 1:

The "public regulation commission" is created. The commission shall consist of five members elected from districts provided by law...


As outlined in Article XI of the New Mexico Constitution, commissioners are elected to staggered four-year terms beginning January 1 following their election.


See also: New Mexico down ballot state executive elections, 2012

Democratic incumbent Jason Marks assumed the 1st District seat since 2005 and was unable to seek re-election due to term limits. Democrat Karen Montoya was elected to his seat in the general election on November 6, 2012.[3]

  • 2012 General Election Results-District 1
New Mexico Public Regulation Commission District 1 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngKaren Montoya 55% 94,526
     Republican Christopher Ocksrider 45% 77,256
Total Votes 171,782
Election Results via New Mexico Secretary of State.

In a four-way battle Valerie Espinoza won the Democratic nomination on June 5, 2012. Since no Republicans filed for the seat, Ezpinoza had no major party opposition in the general election.[4]

  • 2012 General Election Results-District 3
New Mexico Public Regulation Commission District 3 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngValerie Espinoza 100% 127,569
Total Votes 127,569
Election Results via New Mexico Secretary of State.

Term limits

Commissioners are limited to serving two consecutive terms.


In 2010, the New Mexico Public Regulation Commissioners were paid an estimated $90,000 according to the Council of State Governments.[5]


An investigation in August 2011 found a series of questionable charges made to Commissioner Jerome Block's state-issued gas card, totaling over $8,000 during the first six months of the year.[6] On the heels of that revelation came charges alleging Block drove a car off of a sales lot to take it to a mechanic and never returned it. He was also found to be driving on a suspended license.[7]

On August 12 the commission removed Block from his position as vice-chair. They, along with many other state officials, have called on Block to resign. If he does not, State Speaker of the House Ben Lujan, Sr. said he would form a committee to discuss Block's possible impeachment. Block and his father also have pending criminal charges against them for alleged misuse of public campaign money in 2008.[8]

Contact information

1120 Paseo De Peralta
P.O. Box 1269
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504
Phone: (505) 827-4531

See also

External links

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