BEFORE THE NEW MEXICO PUBLIC REGULATION
IN THE MATTER OF THE JOINT APPLICATION OF )
VALENCIA MESA, LLC. AND
NEW MEXICO WATER )
SERVICE COMPANY FOR THE SEVERAL APPROVALS AND AUTHORIZATIONS )
REQUIRED IN CONNECTION WITH THE ACQUISITION OF VALENCIA MESA, LLC’S )
ASSETS BY NEW MEXICO WATER SERVICE COMPANY; AND, THE APPLICATION
BY NEW MEXICO WATER SERVICE COMPANY FOR APPROVAL TO OPERATE CERTAIN WATER UTILITY FACILITIES, )
VALENCIA MESA, LLC. AND
NEW MEXICO WATER SERVICE COMPANY, )
NOTICE TO CUSTOMERS OF VALENCIA MESA, LLC.
NOTICE of the following matters pertaining to the above captioned case pending before the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission
(“NMPRC” or “Commission”):
On March 1, 2021 Valencia Mesa, LLC. ("Valencia Mesa") and New Mexico Water Service Company ("New Mexico Water") (collectively referred to as "Applicants") jointly filed an Application requesting the following approvals from the Commission:
1. Valencia Mesa to sell, and New Mexico Water to acquire, certain assets of Valencia Mesa, and New Mexico Water to then own and operate Valencia Mesa as a public water utility, in accordance with NMSA 1978, §§ 62-6-12(A) and 62-6-13;
2. Valencia Mesa to abandon its facilities used to provide water service (“Water Facilities”) and all services rendered by means of such facilities in accordance with NMSA 1978 § 62-9-5;
3. Approval of an amended certificate of public convenience and necessity (“CCN”) to New Mexico Water to include the ownership and operation of Valencia Mesa’s Water Facilities, to include Valencia Mesa’s existing customers in New Mexico Water’s Meadow Lakes Division, and to serve existing Valencia Mesa customers pursuant to the existing approved rates applicable to the Meadow Lakes Division, identical to Valencia Mesa’s current rates in accordance with NMSA 1978, §§ 62-9-1 and 62-9-6.
The following is a summary of Valencia Mesa’s and New Mexico Water’s assertions and testimony filed in support of the Application:
1. Valencia Mesa is financially limited and desires to sell its Water Facilities. Although the water system is now providing safe and reliable service to customers, in the future Valencia Mesa’s water system will require improvements and upgrades. Valencia Mesa is not financially capable of raising funds for future improvements to the water system.
2. The water system should be managed by professional water system personnel dedicated to providing long-term solutions to water service issues. Valencia Mesa wishes to discontinue involvement in the water distribution business.
3. New Mexico Water is in the business of providing quality, cost-effective water and wastewater service in New Mexico. New Mexico Water believes it can provide such service to the Valencia Mesa water system customers.
4. The sale of Valencia Mesa’s assets and the purchase of those assets by New Mexico Water is lawful and consistent with the public interest. Substantial benefits will accrue to Valencia Mesa’s current customers as a result of approval of the acquisition.
5. The Commission is, by law, required to act promptly on Valencia Mesa’s and New Mexico Water’s Application.
6. Further information regarding this case can be obtained by contacting Valencia Mesa, New Mexico Water or the Commission at the addresses and telephone numbers provided below. The Commission has assigned Case No. 21-00041-UT to this proceeding and all inquiries pleadings or other documents should refer to said case number and include it in any caption.
The present procedural schedule for this case is as follows:
a. This Notice shall be published on or before May 3, 2021 in a local newspaper of general circulation, likely the News Bulletin of Valencia County.
b. On or before May 24, 2021, any person desiring to intervene to become a party (“Intervenor”) in this case must file a motion for leave to intervene in conformity with NMPRC Rules of Procedure 18.104.22.168(A) and (B) NMAC. Persons who wish to provide comments on this case without becoming a party may do so without filing a motion to intervene.
c. On or before June 29, 2021, Staff shall, and Intervenors may, file Direct Testimony. Valencia Mesa and New Mexico Water each filed Direct Testimony with the Application.
d. Rebuttal testimony may be filed on or before July 13, 2021.
e. A public hearing on this matter shall be held on July 20, 2021, commencing at 10:00 a.m. MT. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the public hearing is currently anticipated to be conducted via the Zoom video conference platform. This could change depending on the specific circumstances at the time of the hearing. Access to and participation in the evidentiary hearing shall be limited to party-participants (i.e., attorneys and witnesses) and any Commissioners desiring to participate. The Zoom hearing will be livestreamed through YouTube and will be displayed on the Commission’s website. Persons not participating in the hearing as an attorney or witness may view the hearing on the Commission’s website and shall not join the hearing via Zoom except to provide oral comments.
f. Should the parties resolve all issues herein, by stipulation, any such stipulation shall be filed by June 18, 2021; any testimony in opposition to said stipulation shall be filed by June 23, 2021; any testimony in support of said stipulation shall be filed by July 12, 2020.
g. The procedural dates and requirements of this case are subject to further order of the Commission or Hearing Examiner. Interested persons should contact the Commission at (505) 690-4191 for confirmation of the hearing date, time, and place, since hearings are occasionally rescheduled.
h. Interested persons may also examine Valencia Mesa’s and New Mexico Water’s Application and all other pleadings, testimony, exhibits and other documents filed in the public record for this case on the Commission’s website at https://edocket.nmprc.state.nm.us.
i. The Commission’s Rules of Procedure (22.214.171.124 NMAC) shall apply to this proceeding except as modified by order of the Commission or Hearing Examiner. A copy of the rules may be obtained from the offices of the Commission or at:
j. Anyone filing pleadings, documents or testimony in this case shall comply with the Commission’s electronic filing policy, as amended from time to time. This includes filings in .pdf format, with electronic signatures, sent to the Records Bureau’s email address, as set out on the Commission’s website, at: [email protected], within regular business hours of the due date. Documents received after business hours will be considered as filed the next business day. Regular business hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time. Parties shall serve a copy on all parties of record and Staff in the manner specified on the most recent Certificate of Service for this case. All filings shall be e-mailed on the date they are filed with the Commission. Any such filings shall also be e-mailed to the Hearing Examiner at [email protected] All documents emailed to the Hearing Examiner shall include “Word” files if created in that format.
k. Any person whose testimony has been pre-filed shall attend the hearing and submit to examination under oath.
l. Any interested person may appear at the time of hearing and make a written or oral comment pursuant to 126.96.36.199(F) NMAC without becoming an Intervenor.
m. Interested persons may also send written comments, which shall reference NMPRC Case No. 21-00041-UT. Such comments will not be considered as evidence in this proceeding.
n. Additional details regarding this proceeding and its procedural requirements are set forth in the Hearing Examiner’s April 12, 2021 Procedural Order.
ANY PERSON WITH A DISABILITY REQUIRING SPECIAL ASSISTANCE IN ORDER TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS PROCEEDING SHOULD CONTACT THE COMMISSION AT LEAST 24 HOURS PRIOR TO THE COMMENCEMENT OF THE HEARING.
Issued at Santa Fe, New Mexico, on April 12, 2021.
NEW MEXICO PUBLIC
/s/ Robert J. Lennon
Published in the Valencia County News-Bulletin on
April 29, 2021.
The Valencia County News-Bulletin is a locally owned and operated community newspaper, dedicated to serving Valencia County since 1910 through the highest journalistic and professional business standards. The VCNB is published weekly on Thursdays, including holidays both in print and online.