Change to county grievance procedure tabled

Robin Fornoff Curry County commissioners were poised Friday to delete a grievance procedure from their employee personnel policy. Then, four department chiefs objected and the measure failed in a flurry of confusing motions and procedures. “This is ridiculous,” said Commissioner Frank Blackburn, who minutes earlier had aligned himself with Commissioner Robert Sandoval to leave the […]

Cuts in gifted education hurt kids’ potential

Aisha Sultan “How can we measure the sonata unwritten, the curative drug undiscovered, the absence of political insight? They are the difference between what we are, and where we could be as a society.” — James Gallagher, former director of the FPG Child Development Institute at UNC-Chapel Hill. There is a well-tolerated discrimination in our […]

Their view: Transparency measure ripe for abuse

Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste, says a new initiative by President Obama would instruct contract officers to consider political donations.

Their view: Funeral procession ban extreme measure

Funeral procession ban extreme measure A district attorney in Texas’ Rio Grande Valley is proposing outlawing funeral processions in his county. The Brownsville Herald newspaper opposed the idea in an editorial. Here’s a snippet:

Measure bumps up county term limits

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican The Senate on Saturday passed a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow county officials in the state — commissioners, sheriffs, clerks, treasurers and assessors — to run for three consecutive four-year terms instead of the two terms under current law. The resolution passed with a 27-14 vote. It had […]

Freeze means freeze: Lawmaker’s bill cracks down on state hires

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican A lawmaker upset over the continued hiring of state employees after a Gov. Bill Richardson-imposed hiring halt has introduced a measure that sets out stringent criteria for exemptions to the rule. Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, R-Sandia Park, is carrying a bill (SB 215) that would only allow the state […]

Candidates weigh in on domestic partnership bill

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican As a measure to give domestic partners many of the rights and privileges as married couples inches through the Legislature, supporters hope it becomes law this year — when Gov. Bill Richardson has said he will sign it. That’s because New Mexico next year could have a governor who […]

Measure would make information accessible online

By Kate Nash: The Santa Fe New Mexican Residents who want to know more about state government’s pocketbook, its power players and public meetings would have an easier time accessing information online under a series of measures introduced so far this session. Ideas advancing their way through the process include expanding webcasting in the House […]

1-28 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 21 Restaurant tax would fund promos A measure (HB 189) carried by Rep. Jim Trujillo, D-Santa Fe, would generate between $6 and $6.5 million for the state’s Department of Tourism advertising budget. The 1/4 of one percent tax would be imposed “on the gross receipts of a prepared food or alcoholic […]

Legislative tidbits: Measure would prohibit texting while driving

The Santa Fe New Mexican Days remaining in session: 27

Legislative tidbits: Bill would limit bills

Days remaining in session: 28 Bill would limit bills A measure introduced by Sen. Peter Wirth, D-Santa Fe, would limit the number of bills a lawmaker can introduce each session. Under the plan, lawmakers could prefile as many bills online as they like before a session starts, but then would be limited to five bills […]

Senate OKs health care measure, reaching milestone

By Erica Werner: The Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats passed a landmark health care bill in a climactic Christmas Eve vote that could define President Barack Obama’s legacy and usher in near-universal medical coverage for the first time in the country’s history. “We are now finally poised to deliver on the promise of […]

Naming state songs waste of officials’ time

Freedom New Mexico As if we need another means to measure how far government has strayed from the narrow intent of our nation’s founders, we give you the current flap in Oklahoma. A collection of conservative lawmakers became outraged that the song “Do You Realize??” by native sons Flaming Lips was poised to become the […]

Senate agrees to open doors on committee meetings

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican After more than 10 years of trying to open conference committees, new members of the Senate may have made the difference. The Senate voted late Thursday night 33-8 to approve a measure to open the committee meetings, some of the last shuttered gatherings at the Roundhouse. House Bill 393 […]

Long day, night at Roundhouse

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican In any other year, three days out from the Legislature’s adjournment, the Roundhouse hallways by 9:30 a.m. can be frenetic with lawmakers and lobbyists pondering the fate of their bills. Instead, the halls are mostly quiet, and the coffee maker of the Society of Association Executives is just rumbling […]

March 19, 2009 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: two Media literacy: Under a bill approved by both the House and Senate, public schools could offer media literacy as an elective class. The measure (HB342) calls for the electives to be offered to 6th through 12th graders starting in the 2010-2011 school year. Rep. Antonio “Moe” Maestas, D-Albuquerque, is carrying […]

Bill allowing broadcast of legal ads clears House

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican A measure that would allow a legal advertisements to be broadcast on television or read on the radio to meet publication requirements has cleared the House, but might face a tough time in its first Senate committee. The measure, sponsored by House Speaker Ben Lujan, D-Nambe, would allow ads […]

March 17, 2009 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: four Electronic medical records bill heads to governor The House has approved a measure that would allow patients and doctors to chose to use electronic medical records. Under the measure (SB 278), which is now headed to Gov. Bill Richardson’s desk, patients would re-consent annually to have their information available electronically. […]

March 13, 2009 legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 8 The living daylights: The Senate Public Affairs Committee voted 7-1 on Thursday in favor of a bill to abolish daylight saving time in New Mexico. In a news release, bill sponsor Sen. Mary Jane Garcia, D-Dona Ana, said “There are so many reasons for New Mexico to exempt itself from […]

Bill seeks transparency on state spending

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican State expenditures would be displayed online and searchable under a measure the Senate approved Tuesday, one of a few moves that would increase transparency in the Roundhouse this year. Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, who is carrying the measure (SB159), said it would make it easy for people to follow […]