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Anti-Hazing Bill Advances Past House

on March 13, 2017 - 6:26pm

Rep. Monica Youngblood

STATE  News:

SANTA FE – This afternoon, the House of Representatives passed House Bill 427, a bill sponsored by Rep. Monica Youngblood (R-Bernalillo) to prevent hazing in New Mexico’s schools. The House approved the bill by a 56 to 2 vote.

Youngblood’s bill would require every New Mexico educational institution to adopt, post, and enforce a hazing prevention policy. The bill defines what actions are considered hazing and lists the areas that hazing policies need to address to ensure the policies are consistent statewide.

According to recent statistics, forty-eight

Udall Celebrates Women's History Month

on March 13, 2017 - 3:09pm
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall 
 
SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Sen. Tom Udall issued the following statement today in honor of Women's History Month:
 
"This Women's History Month, we celebrate the resiliency and strength of generations of women in New Mexico and nationwide, who have marched, organized and rallied for equality in the face of great opposition.

House Passes Bill Benefitting New Mexico Businesses

on March 13, 2017 - 9:32am

STATE News:
  • HB 356 Uses LEDA Funds to Create Jobs & Promote Local Businesses

SANTA FE -- The New Mexico House of Representatives passed House Bill 356, which uses Local Economic Development Act (LEDA) funds to increase local economic growth and create jobs.

HB 356 sponsored by Representatives Rudy Martinez (D-Grants) and Daymon Ely (D-Corrales), targets $2 million in investment dollars specifically for resident businesses in both rural and urban New Mexico.

“When our small businesses thrive, our state thrives,” Rep. Martinez said.

Bipartisan Bill To Rein In Predatory Loan Practices Passes House

on March 13, 2017 - 9:25am

STATE News:

SANTA FE -- The New Mexico House of Representatives has passed House Bill 347, a bill to rein in predatory loan practices, in a sweeping bipartisan vote of 64-2. Sponsored by Rep. Patty Lundstrom (D-Gallup) and Rep. Debbie Rodella (D-Española), HB 347 is part of a bipartisan effort to limit the fees and charges financial institutions add to installment loans, also known as payday loans, and to implement financial literacy programs in the state.

"We need to make sure the consumer financial market works for everyday New Mexicans, not just the well-connected,” Rep. Lundstrom said.

Letter To The Editor: Slanted Press Is Nothing New

on March 13, 2017 - 7:51am
By RICHARD NEBEL
Los Alamos 

This is in response to letters from Ms. Dolejsi (link), Ms. Remillieux (link) and Mr. Visel (link) about “Freedom of the Press”.

One thing that Mr. Visel states in his letter is that “No one can trust CNN or the mainstream media anymore”. The part I take issue with is the “anymore” part of the statement. The press has always been slanted.

Many of the newspapers that were founded in the 19th Century were founded and owned by the political parties. For instance, the Chicago Tribune was founded by the Republican party.

Lunch With A Leader Features New Mexico Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Daniels March 21

on March 13, 2017 - 7:49am
New Mexico Supreme Court Justice Charles W. Daniels
 
LWVLA News:
 
This month’s Lunch with a Leader features Chief Justice Charles Daniels of the New Mexico Supreme Court at 11:45 a.m., March 21 in Mesa Public Library.  
 
Justice Daniels will discuss bail reform in New Mexico — working to improve public safety while protecting individual rights. He was initially appointed to the Supreme Court in October 2007 by recommendation of the nonpartisan Judicial Nominating Commission. He was unopposed in the 2008 primary and general elections and elected to continue in the position.

Letter To The Editor: Background Checks Needed For All Gun Sales

on March 13, 2017 - 7:20am
By CATHY WEBER
Los Alamos
 

I am writing because I support  requiring background checks for all gun sales. As a mom and member of Moms Demand Action, I know gun safety is good for kids and families.

 

Right now, the New Mexico legislature is considering bills that would expand criminal background checks for gun sales to include purchases from unlicensed sellers over the Internet and at gun shows. The background check bill would close the dangerous unlicensed sale loophole and make it harder for criminals to buy guns from strangers in unlicensed sales at gun shows.

 

Weak gun laws

Letter To The Editor: If You Really Want A Background Check Bill Passed ... Tell ‘Moms’ And ‘Everytown’ To Sit Down, Shut Up, And Listen

on March 12, 2017 - 10:17am
By KHALIL J. SPENCER
Los Alamos
 
I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or cry when I read the latest pro “background check” letter (by Amber Espinosa-Trujillo) in what seems to be an orchestrated letter writing campaign by Everytown for Gun Safety/Moms Demand Action.

Indeed, it has probably been the tone-deafness and intransigence of that group (both “Everytown” and “Moms” are names for “Astroturf” organizations supported by New York City billionaire Michael Bloomberg) that have stood in the way of a background bill passing out of the legislature.

The out of state lobbyists and their supporters,

Governor Acts On Three More Bills

on March 12, 2017 - 9:34am

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez

STATE News:

SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez acted on the following legislation Saturday:

  • Signed House Bill 12 – Close Certain Taos & Colfax Magistrate Courts [MESSAGE]
  • Vetoed Senate Bill 200 – Certified School Employee Program Units [MESSAGE]
  • Vetoed Senate Bill 6 – Industrial Hemp Research Rules [MESSAGE]

Letter To The Editor: Strip ’Em To Their Skivvies And Light One Off!

on March 12, 2017 - 9:19am
By Dr. T. DOUGLAS REILLY
Los Alamos
 

Back in the 1970's, Harold Agnew,* third director of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory (LASL), presented a Director's Colloquium to explain his congressional testimony regarding a proposed Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). He feared the world's leaders would soon forget the destructive power of nuclear weapons, so he proposed the following:

“Every five or so years, gather the world’s leaders on an uninhabited island in the South Pacific, ‘strip ’em to their skivvies,’ and ‘Light one off!’ First they’d be blinded 10 or more seconds by the light, then

Bill Restricting Isolated Confinement Passes House

on March 12, 2017 - 9:04am

STATE News:  
  • HB 175 Restricts New Mexico Correctional Facilities’ Use of Outdated & Inhumane Practice

SANTA FE – The New Mexico House of Representatives passed House Bill 175, the Isolated Confinement Act, in a 38-22 vote Saturday evening.

HB 175 restricts the use of isolated confinement in New Mexico prisons and jails for pregnant women, minors and those suffering from severe mental illness. It also sets a 48-hour maximum for isolated confinement in cases of emergency and a five-day maximum upon initial booking.

“Isolated confinement is overused and misused in our great state,” Rep.

Letter To The Editor: Internet And Gun Show Sales

on March 12, 2017 - 8:54am

AFTNM On Senate Passage Of House Bill 2

on March 12, 2017 - 8:28am

House Approves Bill To Protect Nonprofit Volunteers

on March 12, 2017 - 7:34am
STATE News:
 
SANTA FE The House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill to protect volunteers from personal liability when they are performing services for nonprofit organizations.
 
House Bill 224 is sponsored by Reps. Yvette Herrell (R-Otero) and Bob Wooley (R-Chaves, Lea & Roosevelt).
 
The provisions of the legislation would cover properly trained volunteers acting in good faith and within the scope of their assigned duties.

Heinrich On 16 Million New Private-Sector Jobs

on March 12, 2017 - 7:29am
U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich issued the following statement after February’s employment report showed more than 16 million private-sector jobs have been created over the past 84 months.
 
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the economy added 235,000 jobs in February.
 
“Today’s jobs numbers make clear what we have known for some time: President Trump did not inherit a mess, in fact he inherited one of the longest expansions in American history.

House Passes Memorial To Protect Chaco Canyon

on March 11, 2017 - 10:31pm

Kin Bineola is an Ancestral Puebloan great house and archeological site 12 miles from Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Culture National Historical Park. Courtedy/NPS

 

STATE News:

SANTA FE -- Tonight, House Memorial 70, the Protection of Chaco Canyon Landscape, sponsored by Rep. Derrick Lente (D-Sandia Pueblo), passed the New Mexico House of Representatives in a 31-28 party-line vote.

HM 70 requests that the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) respect their established relationship with tribal entities by consulting with tribes on any hydraulic fracking operations around the historic Chaco

Letter To The Editor: What's Next For The Sheriff?

on March 11, 2017 - 4:05pm

Bill To Rein In Predatory Loan Practices Clears Hurdle

on March 11, 2017 - 11:15am
Rep. Patty Lundstrom
 
STATE News:
 
SANTA FE Rep. Patty Lundstrom’s (D-Gallup) bill to rein in predatory loan practices has passed the House Judiciary Committee by a 9-1 vote.
 
HB 347 would limit the fees and charges financial institutions add to installment loans, also known as payday loans, and implement financial literacy programs in the state.
 
"We need to make sure the consumer financial market works for everyday New Mexicans, not just the well-connected,” said Representative Patty Lundstrom (D-Gallup). “New Mexicans deserve access to loans with fair interest rates, without

Luján Introduces Two Measures Designed To Increase Transparency In Political Advertising

on March 11, 2017 - 7:47am
U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján
 
U.S. CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), introduced two pieces of legislation March 8 to increase transparency and openness in the political system by making it easier to determine exactly who is sponsoring and paying for political ads.
 
Luján’s bills make it easier to determine who is funding anonymous political ads and require that information filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) about those ads be more available and accessible to the public.
 
“Since the Citizens United decision opened the doors to

Letter To The Editor: Veto Override Of HB241 Hurts

on March 11, 2017 - 7:42am
By CHARLES BOWYER
NEW-NM Executive Director
 
Gov. Susana Martinez doesn't think teachers are human, too, since she vetoed HB 241 introduced by Republican legislators.
 
The veto is inhumane - hurting both students and educators. House Bill 241 recognizes that teachers might occasionally need to take sick leave.
 
Fortunately the majority in both the House (only three votes against) and Senate (unanimously in favor) do believe teachers are human, too.
 
Educators statewide urge the House and the Senate to override the Governor's veto, as called for by Sen. Brandt (R-Rio Rancho).

Udall Votes Against Friedman For Ambassador To Israel

on March 11, 2017 - 7:08am
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall 
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  March 9, in the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall voted against confirming David Friedman for ambassador to Israel.
 
Udall cited Friedman's litany of well-documented, extreme, and inflammatory positions and statements maligning members of the Senate, the Obama administration, other public officials, and prominent Jewish organizations. 
 
The Committee advanced Mr.

Solar Panels On State Buildings Passes Committee

on March 11, 2017 - 7:06am
HOUSE DEMOCRATS News:
 
SANTA FE  An important committee of the New Mexico House of Representatives March 9 voted on a bipartisan basis to advance Senate Bill 227, a bill requiring state government to install solar energy panels on its 750 buildings, so long as it would provide a net savings on utility costs and not require any upfront costs. 
 
Sen. Jeff Steinborn of Las Cruces, the bill’s sponsor, said the legislation will give taxpayers and the State potentially huge potential savings on electric and energy costs. 
 
The bill now moves to the House Judiciary Committee for a vote.

AG Scam Alert: Attorney General Warns Consumers About Top Scams Hitting New Mexico

on March 10, 2017 - 11:18am
Attorney General Hector Balderas
 
PUBLIC SAFETY News:
 
ALBUQUERQUE  On Day 6 of National Consumer Protection Week, Attorney General Balderas issued a Scam Alert for the top scams hitting New Mexico consumers.
 
“During Consumer Protection Week, I’m urging New Mexicans to educate themselves about the most common scams hitting New Mexico households and how to spot them before it’s too late,” Balderas said. “Never, ever give out your personal or financial information to someone who calls or emails you.”
 
Top scams hitting New Mexico households
 
Offers to help "expedite" consumer

Bill To Invest In New Mexico Infrastructure Projects Passes House

on March 10, 2017 - 11:15am
STATE DEMOCRATS News:
 
SANTA FE A bill that would invest in New Mexico infrastructure projects passed the New Mexico House, March 9, by a bipartisan vote of 47-20.
 
HB 405 allows the State Investment Council (SIC) to invest half of the state’s permanent fund infrastructure investments on infrastructure projects in New Mexico.
 
“By investing in our state’s infrastructure we are ensuring job creation and long term economic growth,” bill sponsor Representative Antonio Maestas (D-Albuquerque) said.

Scenes From Los Alamos ‘Day Without A Woman’

on March 10, 2017 - 11:14am
Los Alamos County Councilor Chris Chandler speaks to a crowd of some 200 people gathered Wednesday at Ashley Pond Park for the Day Without A Woman! event as part of International Women's Day. The goal of the rally was to highlight the economic power and significance that women have in the US and global economies, while calling attention to the economic injustices women continue to face. ‘No doubt many of you are worried about the things that are happening in our country,’ Chandler said.

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