Public Official ‘Cooling Off’ Bill Continues To Advance


SANTA FE The House Judiciary Committee approved House Bill 73 Tuesday, a bill sponsored by Rep. Jim Dines (R-Bernalillo) to enhance “cooling off” standards for New Mexico public officials.
The bill is cosponsored by Rep. Joanne Ferrary (D-Doña Ana) and Rep. Nathan Small (D-Doña Ana).
Dines’ legislation would restrict certain former state officials from becoming compensated lobbyists for at least two years after leaving their public positions.
The restriction would apply to statewide elected officials, legislators, cabinet secretaries and Public Regulation Commissioners.
“Enacting a cooling off period for public officials gives New Mexicans confidence that decisions regarding our state’s policies are being made transparently,” Dines said. “All proposed changes affecting our laws and regulations should be open to a full debate and evaluation by the state’s citizens. The measures included in this bill would provide additional support for the public’s trust in our policymaking processes.”
The House Judiciary Committee passed House Bill 73 by a bipartisan vote of 11 to 2. The bill will be heard by the full House of Representatives next.