Governor Issues Executive Order To Help Ensure Supply Of Propane After Massive Snowstorm

Gov. Susana Martinez
SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez has issued an executive order  to help keep up the supply of propane throughout the state as a result of the massive snowstorm that has impacted communities throughout New Mexico. 
The governor’s executive order suspends regulations on the number of hours that propane suppliers may drive in order to expedite its delivery into the state.

“We continue to coordinate storm response efforts through all state and local partners,” Martinez said. “This order will allow suppliers to move propane through New Mexico faster as we continue to work to monitor and respond to this massive snow storm.”

This is the latest in a series of orders and directives from Martinez designed to monitor and respond to the situation throughout the state. 

On Saturday, Martinez put the New Mexico National Guard on standby, and ordered several state agencies, including the Departments of Transportation (DOT), Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHSEM), and the New Mexico State Police to work closely together to monitor, prepare for, and respond to the storm to ensure the safety of New Mexicans.
These efforts are ongoing. Additionally, yesterday, the Governor declared a state of emergency and directed all available resources to help communities that have been impacted.
The full text of the executive order is below: 
WHEREAS, a recent massive snow storm throughout New Mexico continues to impact the entire state; and

WHEREAS, in addition to this recent storm, freezing temperatures and winter conditions have been experienced throughout New Mexico and the Southwest through the month of December; and

WHEREAS, freezing temperatures pose a threat to residents and commerce; and

WHEREAS, this sudden spike in demand has depleted propane supplies throughout the Southwest; and

WHEREAS, private sector efforts to respond to the propane shortage have been stymied by hours of service regulations that limit the number of hours that truckers who supply the propane can work; and

WHEREAS, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, 49 CFR 390, et seq., limit the hours operators of commercial motor vehicles may drive; and

WHEREAS, 49 CFR 390.23 allows the Governor of a State, having the authority to declare emergencies, to suspend these rules and regulations for up to 30 days.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Susana Martinez, Governor of the State of New Mexico, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the State of New Mexico, do hereby make an emergency declaration, within the meaning of 49 CFR 390.23, for the limited purpose of suspending the federal rules and regulations that limit the hours operators of commercial vehicles may drive, in order to ensure the uninterrupted supply of liquid petroleum gas throughout New Mexico.

This emergency justifies a suspension of Part 395 (drivers’ hours of service) of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The suspension shall remain in effect for 14 days from the date of this Order. Nothing herein shall be construed as an exemption from the Commercial Driver’s License Requirements in 49 CFR 383, the financial requirements in 49 CFR 387, or applicable federal size and weight limitations.

It is further ordered that no motor carrier operating under the terms of this emergency declaration shall require or allow an ill or fatigued driver to operate a motor vehicle. A driver who notifies a motor carrier that he or she needs immediate rest shall be given at least 10 consecutive hours off-duty before the driver is required to return to service.

It is further ordered that this Order does not suspend the operation of any state or federal laws or regulations within the state of New Mexico except as specifically described in the Order. All other laws and regulations remain in full force and effect.

THIS ORDER supersedes any other previous orders, proclamations, or directives to the extent they are in conflict. This Executive Order shall take effect immediately.

Signed at the executive office this 28th day of December 2015. Witness my hand and the great seal of the state of New Mexico.