HOUSE BILL 160
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
Christine Chandler and Michael Padilla and Natalie Figueroa and
RELATING TO STATE PROPERTIES; AMENDING SECTION 19-7-57 NMSA 1978 (BEING LAWS 1912, CHAPTER 82, SECTION 53, AS AMENDED) TO AUTHORIZE THE COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC LANDS TO GRANT RIGHTS OF WAY AND EASEMENTS ACROSS STATE LANDS FOR INFRASTRUCTURE USED FOR BROADBAND INTERNET SERVICES; AMENDING SECTION 67-3-12 NMSA 1978 (BEING LAWS 1929, CHAPTER 110, SECTION 1, AS AMENDED) TO AUTHORIZE THE STATE TRANSPORTATION COMMISSION TO PRESCRIBE CONDITIONS FOR THE INSTALLATION OF BROADBAND INTERNET INFRASTRUCTURE PLACED ALONG, ACROSS, OVER OR UNDER PUBLIC HIGHWAYS OR OTHER PROPERTY UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION; AUTHORIZING THE WAIVER OF FEES OR LEASING COSTS FOR INFRASTRUCTURE THAT IS TO BE USED PRIMARILY TO PROVIDE BROADBAND INTERNET SERVICES TO UNSERVED OR UNDERSERVED LOCATIONS AS DEFINED IN THE CONNECT NEW MEXICO ACT.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 19-7-57 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1912, Chapter 82, Section 53, as amended) is amended to read:
"19-7-57. COMMISSIONER--POWERS--EASEMENTS--RIGHTS OF WAY.--
A. The commissioner may grant rights of way [and] or easements over, upon or across state lands for fiber cable lines, conduit, poles, wireless technology or other infrastructure used for broadband internet services, public highways, railroads, tramways, telegraph, telephone and power lines, irrigation works, mining, logging and other purposes upon payment by the grantee of the price fixed by the commissioner, which shall not be less than the minimum price for the lands, used, as fixed by law. The commissioner may grant a right of way or easement over, upon or across state lands for oil, hazardous liquid and gas pipelines if the right-of-way grant or easement requires compliance with the Pipeline Safety Act [Section 70-3-11, et seq., NMSA 1978] and rules adopted pursuant to that act and provides for regulatory and agencies' access to records of compliance.
B. The commissioner may waive fees or leasing costs for rights of way or easements granted pursuant to Subsection A of this section for infrastructure that is to be used primarily to provide broadband internet services to unserved or underserved locations, as defined in the Connect New Mexico Act."
SECTION 2. Section 67-3-12 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1929, Chapter 110, Section 1, as amended) is amended to read:
"67-3-12. POWERS AND DUTIES.--In addition to the powers now conferred upon it by law, the state transportation commission:
A. may declare abandoned and close to public traffic all grade crossings of railroads by state highways in cases where grade separations or other adequate crossings are substituted therefor or where such grade crossings become unnecessary to the public convenience by reason of changes in highway locations;
B. may offer and, upon compliance with the conditions of such offer, pay rewards for information leading to the arrest and conviction of offenders in cases of theft, defacement or destruction of markers or highway signs, lights or other warning devices placed upon or along highways of this state under the supervision of the state transportation commission and for information leading to the arrest and conviction of offenders or for the return of property in case of theft or unlawful damaging of property under the control of the commission. All such rewards when paid shall be paid from the state road fund upon voucher drawn by the secretary or other authorized officer or agent of the department;
C. shall prescribe by rule the conditions under which fiber cable lines, conduit, poles, wireless technology or other infrastructure used for broadband internet services, pipelines, telephone, telegraph and electric transmission lines and ditches may be placed along, across, over or under public highways in this state or other property under the jurisdiction of the department and shall forcibly remove or cause to be removed pipelines, telephone, telegraph or electric transmission lines or ditches that may be placed along, across, over or under such public highways in violation of such rules and regulations;
D. may waive administrative fees and annual fees for infrastructure authorized pursuant to Subsection C of this section that is to be used primarily to provide broadband internet services to unserved or underserved locations, as defined in the Connect New Mexico Act;
[D.] E. shall employ an attorney to assist and advise the state transportation commission and the department in the discharge of their duties and to appear and represent the interests of the commission or department in any case before any court or tribunal in which the official duties, powers, rights or privileges of the commission or department may be involved or affected and to pay that attorney the reasonable value of the attorney's services out of the state road fund;
[E.] F. shall bring and maintain in the name of the state actions and proceedings deemed necessary by the state transportation commission for the condemnation of rights of way for public highways or for the removal or condemnation of buildings or other improvements that encroach in whole or part upon the rights of way of public highways or for the condemnation of gravel pits or other deposits of materials or supplies suitable for the construction of public highways.
The attorney general of New Mexico shall appear in and prosecute all such cases on behalf of the state upon request of the state transportation commission. All such proceedings shall be conducted in the same manner as other cases for the condemnation of real property. The damages assessed in proceedings brought under the provisions of this section shall be paid out of the state road fund from money furnished for that purpose by cooperative agreement between the state, federal government and the county within which the condemned property is situate or any such governmental bodies or out of money furnished for the construction of the highway in connection with which the condemnation is had, by the county in which the condemned property is situate; provided, however, that if no such money is available, the damages shall be advanced on behalf of said counties out of their money in the state road fund and the state treasurer shall thereafter reimburse the state road fund for the money advanced out of the next installment of money from motor vehicle license fees accruing to the road fund of the county for which such funds were so advanced;
[F.] G. shall designate in its discretion one of its employees as acting secretary to act at all times when the secretary is absent from the state capital. The acting secretary, when designated, has the right and is hereby given authority at all times when the secretary is absent from the state capital to sign all federal project statements, federal project agreements and federal vouchers with the same force and effect as if signed by the secretary in person, and the certificate of the acting secretary attached to any federal project statement, federal project agreement or federal voucher to the effect that the secretary was absent from the state capital at the time that the same was so signed by the acting secretary shall be conclusive evidence of the truth of such fact. The acting secretary may also be vested by the state transportation commission with power and authority to act for the secretary in such other matters as the state transportation commission may determine;
[G.] H. subject to the provisions of Subsection [H] I of this section, may conduct, permit or authorize commercial enterprises or activities on department- or commission-owned land or land leased to or from the department for the purpose of providing goods and services to the users of the property or facilities on the land, including commercial enterprises or activities, other than commercial enterprises or activities on a controlled-access facility conducted, permitted or authorized pursuant to Section 67-11-9 NMSA 1978. In furtherance of these commercial enterprises or activities, the commission may:
(1) authorize the lease of department- or commission-owned land as it deems necessary, in which case consideration for the lease shall be payments in cash or cash equivalent that shall be deposited into the state road fund; or
(2) authorize the sale or exchange or lease with in-lieu value consideration of department- or commission-owned land; provided that the sale or exchange or lease with in-lieu value shall be subject to the ratification and approval by joint resolution of the state legislature prior to the sale or exchange or lease with in-lieu value becoming effective; and
[H.] I. for the purposes of Subsection [G] H of this section shall:
(1) adopt rules necessary to carry out the provisions of Subsection [G] H of this section;
(2) prior to initiating any action to conduct, permit or authorize commercial enterprises or activities, adopt a rule providing a procedure to involve residents of the municipality or county in which the commercial enterprises or activities are proposed to occur in the department's planning and decision-making process for the sole purpose of advising the commission and department on the feasibility and suitability of the proposed commercial enterprises or activities;
(3) comply with the Procurement Code in the acquisition process whenever commercial enterprises or activities result in the commission or department acquiring construction, services or tangible personal property, as those terms are defined in the Procurement Code;
(4) if the commercial enterprises or activities are to be developed or operated by a private entity, direct that private entity to:
(a) create its plans to be not necessarily in compliance but generally compatible with local zoning and land use policies, including affordable housing and historic and architectural standards, if any, and, to the extent the private entity will obtain water or other services from a local authority, negotiate an agreement between relevant parties for those services, the terms and conditions of which shall be no more stringent than the local authority's then current laws, rules and policies; and
(b) submit its plans to the local zoning and land use authority for comment. The local authority shall communicate its recommendations and comments in writing to the department and private entity within thirty days of receiving the plans. The department, commission and private entity shall take no action on the project in reliance on those plans until they have received the local authority's recommendations and comments or until the thirty-day comment period has expired, whichever comes first; provided that the local authority's approval is not required under this section, and this section does not delegate to the local authority power that it does not otherwise have; and
(5) not use the power of eminent domain to acquire land to be developed or operated by a private entity."
SECTION 3. EFFECTIVE DATE.--The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2023.
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