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This week New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson signed into law two bills that will end rate-of-return regulation. This is good news. For the first time, telecommunications users in New Mexico will be treated as consumers rather than ratepayers.
The distinction is more than fancy wordplay. Consumers use their own good sense to make choices about what combination of quality, level of service, and price suit their needs. Consumers are not forced by law to pay a particular price for a product or service, even if they don't like it.
Ratepayers, on the other hand, have important decisions made for them - oftentimes by distant government regulators. The change in New Mexico's law is necessary in order for competition to develop.
To read more about rate-of-return regulation and CSE activism against it in Oregon,click here.