Vivint Solar Files Lawsuit against Attorney General Balderas seeking Damages and Relief under the New Mexico Inspection of Public Records Act (IPRA)20 December, 2018 | Press Releases
Company Also Seeks to Dismiss Claims in the Lawsuit against it and Disqualify Out-of-State Law Firm for Violating New Mexico’s Pay-to-Play Laws
LEHI, Utah, Dec. 20, 2018 -- Vivint Solar, a leading full-service residential solar company, filed a lawsuit on Monday against the Office of the New Mexico Attorney General (OAG), et al., based on violations of the New Mexico Inspection of Public Records Act (IPRA). The IPRA lawsuit filed in Santa Fe is related to a separate lawsuit filed against Vivint Solar by Attorney General Balderas in March. Vivint Solar believes that lawsuit lacks merit and has moved to dismiss portions of it.
As Vivint Solar has stated from the beginning, the attorney general’s lawsuit filed against it makes unfair accusations and misleading claims and it looks forward to defending the case in court. Vivint Solar is proud to do business in New Mexico and believes that New Mexicans deserve the best possible experience when adopting clean and affordable renewable energy.
Background on the IPRA Lawsuit
The day after the lawsuit was filed in March, Vivint Solar submitted an IPRA request to the OAG requesting documents about its relationship with Barrack, Rodos & Bacine (“Barrack Rodos”), a Philadelphia law firm hired by the attorney general’s office to handle the lawsuit. The OAG failed to respond as required by IPRA, failed to timely disclose relevant documents, and entirely withheld hundreds of documents. Further, the OAG’s violations of IPRA are inconsistent with the attorney general’s commitment to operating an open and transparent office. In fact, on September 27, 2018, the attorney general called for “stronger penalties” for non-compliance with IPRA.
Background on Motions to Disqualify Out of State Law Firm and Dismiss Certain Claims
Vivint Solar moved to disqualify Barrack Rodos from representing OAG in the first lawsuit for violating New Mexico’s pay-to-play laws. Barrack Rodos made a campaign contribution to Hector Balderas for attorney general in 2016 during the procurement process, and then failed to disclose it in 2017 when it was hired to handle the lawsuit against Vivint Solar. The attorney general also failed to obtain the governor’s consent when he hired Barrack Rodos.
These acts violate New Mexico law, and Barrack Rodos should be disqualified from representing the attorney general as a result. Vivint Solar also filed a motion to dismiss certain claims in the first lawsuit that fail as a matter of law. These motions were filed on November 13, 2018, after negotiations about resolving the litigation broke down. These actions further underscore the company’s belief that the attorney general’s lawsuit is baseless, creates confusion about the solar industry, and doesn’t serve New Mexicans, who deserve better.
About Vivint Solar
Vivint Solar is a leading full-service residential solar provider in the United States. With Vivint Solar, customers can power their homes with clean, renewable energy and typically achieve significant financial savings over time. Offering integrated residential solar solutions, Vivint Solar designs and installs solar energy systems for its customers, and offers monitoring and maintenance services. In addition to being able to purchase a solar energy system outright, customers may benefit from Vivint Solar's affordable, flexible financing options, including power purchase agreements, or lease agreements, where available. Vivint Solar also offers solar plus storage systems with LG home batteries. For more information, visit www.vivintsolar.com or follow @VivintSolar on Twitter.
Senior Director of Communications