FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 1, 2019
JMEC Press Release
HERNANDEZ, NM – In a decision rendered by the First Judicial District Court in Santa Fe on Monday, September 30, 2019, the Court denied the emergency application for temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction requested by plaintiffs Bruce Duran, David Salazar, Patrick Herrera, Charles Wright and Robert Garcia in their lawsuit against the Board of Trustees (Board) for Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Coop). The Court’s order then stated that the Court would permit the Board maintain the current status quo on the composition of the Board as it existed on September 30, 2019, and the Board could continue its ordinary operation until a trial on the merits was conducted.
The Court then proceeded to conduct a one-day trial where it rendered its determination on the merits of the plaintiffs’ request for injunctive relief. Testimony was heard from witnesses in the case, including the President of the Board, Leo Marquez, that the Board followed the requirements of the Bylaws and acted in good faith when legitimate concerns were raised regarding the qualification requirements of Mr. Duran to be a candidate for election to the Board of Trustees under the Bylaws. Evidence was presented to the Court regarding the status of Mr. Duran’s membership, his marital status, his representations to be a qualified candidate, his electric billing and payment records and his residency in the district he intended to represent. The Board also considered, in relation to Mr. Duran’s marital status, the allegations made in two letters received from an attorney representing two women who have made sexual harassment allegations against Mr. Duran.
The Court determined that the Board acted within its Bylaws in making its determination that Mr. Duran did not meet the qualifications under the Bylaws to be a candidate for election to the Board of Trustees, and that the Board acted in good faith in completing its duties under the Bylaws. Nonetheless, the Court determined that the Board reached the wrong conclusion and rendered a decision that Mr. Duran should be reinstated onto the Board. The Board is currently considering its options for further legal proceedings.
Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative, Inc.