Politics

Santa Fe New Mexican: Ringside Seat

Sen. Bill Tallman

By MILAN SIMONICH
The New Mexican

Talk about reversal of fortune. After 10 years of defeats, proponents of spending part of a $19.7 billion state endowment for early childhood education saw their proposal rescued Monday from the legislative graveyard.

The Senate Rules Committee cut in half the amount of money the program would receive. But the committee also gave the revamped proposal life as the legislative session heads into its final three days.

Two Democrats who had previously opposed the measure — Sens. Bill Tallman of Albuquerque and Clemente Sanchez of Grants — saved


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Bill Creating Path To Import Drugs From Canada Sent To Gov

 

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham. Courtesy/The Governor’s Office

By MICHAEL GERSTEIN
The New Mexican

A bill that would create a potential pathway for New Mexico to import prescription drugs from Canada is now on its way to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s desk, where it is expected to be signed into law.

The House unanimously approved Senate Bill 1, which calls for the state to create a plan for Canadian drug imports, late Sunday night in a 68-0 vote after the Senate previously passed the measure. The governor expressed support for the proposal in a statement Sunday night.

“This measure received


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House To Decrease Technical Parole And Probation Numbers

Rep. Antonio ‘Moe’ Maestas

By PHILL CASAUS
The New Mexican

The House late Saturday night approved legislation by a wide margin meant to decrease the number of people on parole or probation going back to prison on technical violations for issues like missing a drug test or an appointment with a parole officer.

In a 47-17 vote, CQ  with some Democrats voting against the measure, the House approved a new version of a bill sponsored by Rep. Antonio “Moe” Maestas, D-Albuquerque and a handful of other lawmakers. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham vetoed a similar bill last year after it cleared both the House


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New Transparency Rule SR 2 Passes Immediately Allowing News Media And Public To Film In Senate Committee Meetings

Sen. Jeff Steinborn

STATE News:

SANTA FE — Sen. Jeff Steinborn passed Senate Rule Two (SR 2) Saturday on a unanimous vote of 40-0 to allow the media and public to film and take pictures during committee meetings of the State Senate.

The previous Rule, which SR 2 replaced required someone to have to seek and obtain permission of Senate Committee Chairs in order to film.

In previous years citizens and members of the press and public have been occasionally denied the opportunity to film or take photos during committee meetings.

It was the third time Steinborn has passed a Rule change in a legislative


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Crafting Of State Budget Could Go Down To Wire

By JENS GOULD
The New Mexican

There was a sign on a key Senate panel’s door Monday morning with underlined writing in all caps.

“House Bill 2 will not be heard today,” it read.

The General Appropriations Act, also known as the main budget bill for New Mexico state government, had been on the Senate Finance Committee’s agenda for Monday but would now have to continue awaiting action, as it has for nearly since two weeks since the House passed it.

“We don’t have the amendments ready,” Committee Chair Sen. John Arthur Smith told The New Mexican. “It’s not an easy process when you have this many amendments.”


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Legislative Roundup: 3 Days Remaining In Session

Legislative Roundup
SFNM News:

Temper, temper: Tensions flared between two Democrats in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday during a discussion of Senate Bill 98, which deals with compliance with minimum wage laws on public works projects.

The verbal dust-up took place between the sponsor, Sen. Jacob Candelaria, D-Albuquerque, and Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto, D-Albuquerque, a member of the committee, over how best to define public records requests regarding employee wages.

Testy exchanges of dialogue and accusations of making faces dominated the conversation for a few moments, and


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Democracy In Action: Los Alamos Democrats Hold Pre-Primary

Democrats from Ward C cast ballots for their delegates to the NM Pre-Primary Convention Saturday at Fuller Lodge. Photo by Bonnie J. Gordon/ladailypost.com

Democrats sign in at the County Pre-Primary Convention Saturday afternoon at Fuller Lodge. Photo by Bonnie J. Gordon/ladailypost.com

By BONNIE J. GORDON
Los Alamos Daily Post
bjgordon@ladailypost.com

Democrats gathered to hear from state candidates and elect delegates to the Democratic Pre-Primary Convention Saturday at Fuller Lodge.

Voting party members numbered 87, Los Alamos County Democratic Party Chair Cat Ozment said.


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Constitutional Amendment Asking Voters To Approve Historic Opportunity For New Mexico’s Kids Passes Senate Committee

HOUSE DEMOCRATS News:

House Democrats Champion Initiative to Lift Generations of Children out of Poverty

SANTA FE – Today, a Constitutional Amendment that would invest tens of millions of dollars every year into the success of New Mexico’s kids, passed the Senate Rules Committee.

House Joint Resolution 1, sponsored by Rep. Antonio “Moe” Maestas (D-Albuquerque), and Rep. Javier Martinez (D-Albuquerque), is a constitutional amendment that uplifts New Mexico’s kids through increased distributions from the $20 billion Land Grant Permanent Fund (LGPF) for quality early childhood education


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House Passes Public Regulation Commission Overhaul Bill

PRC Chief of Staff Jason Montoya

By MICHAEL GERSTEIN
The New Mexican

After three hours of debate, the House passed legislation late Sunday that would dramatically alter the structure of the state commission that regulates utility companies in New Mexico following frustration from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and other elected officials over how it has functioned.

In a 36-34 vote, the House approved a plan to shift nearly every division within the Public Regulation Commission to another state agency that is under the authority of the governor. It also would make the PRC chief of staff a position


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State Republican Party: Progressive Democrats Red Flag Bill Violates New Mexicans Constitutional Rights

From the Republican Party of New Mexico:

ALBUQUERQUE — Last night’s New Mexico House passage of SB5, known as the Red Flag bill, is the latest example of how left-leaning Democrats are tearing away at the fabric of our great state.

By a vote of 39-31, the House snatched away New Mexicans’ Constitutional rights. This legislation, allowing authorities to confiscate firearms if they feel a homeowner may be a threat to himself or others, clearly violates peoples’ 2nd Amendment rights, due process and search and seizure protocol. The bill is essentially a progressive Democrats’


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