House Passes Bill To Improve Energy Efficiency, Reduce Utility Cost Burden For Low Income New Mexicans


The House has voted to pass HB 37, which creates a community energy efficiency development (CEED) block grant program, helping to make utilities more affordable for thousands of low-income New Mexicans and reducing energy consumption across the state. 

HB 37 would improve energy efficiency and affordability for low-income residents across New Mexico. The bill would allow counties, municipalities, Indian nations, tribes, and the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority to apply for block grants administered by the Energy, Minerals, and Natural Resources Department for targeted energy efficiency projects in underserved communities, such as replacing outdated appliances, retrofitting, and weatherizing homes. 

“HB 37 provides direct assistance to our neighbors who have low-incomes and high energy burdens,” said Representative Kristina Ortez (D-Taos). “These projects will put money back in the pockets of struggling families, while creating local jobs and reducing energy consumption, to support our efforts to reduce emissions and combat climate change.” 

On average, families who live below the poverty line spend 15% of their income on utility costs. In New Mexico, some families spend as much as 37% of their income on energy costs. 

HB 37, sponsored by Representatives Ortez, Debra Sariñana (D-Albuquerque), Patricia Roybal Caballero (D-Albuquerque) and Tara Lujan (D-Santa Fe), passed the House with a vote of 44 to 24.