Modrall Sperling Law Firm

Trumping the National Monument Designations of Past Presidents

When a President of the United States sets aside important federal lands for conservation, the accompanying fanfare typically invokes the notion of forever.  But, in light of President Trump’s Executive Order 13792, maybe these national treasures should be asking our government the…

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Executive Order on Review of Designations under the Antiquities Act

President Trump signed an Executive Order (“EO”) on April 26, 2017, directing the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a review of all Presidential designations or expansions of designations of national monuments under the Antiquities Act.1  The review mandated by the EO…

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The Demise of Deference? Chevron’s and Auer’s Uncertain Future

Introduction: President Trump’s recent executive orders and ongoing commitment to regulatory reform are finding complimentary provisions in the form of a number of bills being considered in Congress. One of those bills, the Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017,1 includes a provision that…

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EPA Publishes Final Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule

On November 28, 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) published the final RCRA Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule (“HWGI Rule”). See 81 FR 85732, November 28, 2016. The HWGI Rule is one of the most significant and comprehensive hazardous waste rulemakings that…

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Mining and Public Land Law Update

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New Mexico Mining Commission Narrowly Expands Minimal Impact Permitting Opportunities for Certain Mining Operations

On April 20, 2016, the New Mexico Mining Commission (“NMMC”) conducted a hearing to consider a rule change to the New Mexico Mining Act Reclamation Program (“MARP”) regulations.  The New Mexico Mining Association (“NMMA”) proposed the rule change to expand eligibility for…

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New Mexico Oil Conservation Commission Adopts New Produced Water Regulations

On March 12, 2015, the New Mexico Oil Conservation Commission formally approved a revision to the Commission’s produced water regulations.  The revised Rule repeals and replaces existing Rule 34, which regulates the disposition of produced water, and enacts a new rule regulating…

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Commission Adopts Legislatively Mandated Copper Mine Regulation; NGO Group and NM Attorney General Appeal

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French Court Allows Auction of Sacred Hopi Artifacts to Proceed

A controversial auction of sacred Hopi artifacts went forward on April 12, 2013, after a Paris municipal court judge ruled that a Paris auction house could hold an action of tribal masks considered sacred by the Hopi and other tribes located in…

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Office of State Engineer Considering Changes to Its Water Hearing Regulations

    The State Engineer conducts a variety of administrative hearings as authorized by NMSA 72-2-16 and 72-2-18.  The hearings subject to these statutes include water rights protests, aggrieved water rights applications and compliance orders.  Hearings before the State Engineer’s Hearing Office…


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