NEW MEXICO Weekly Wrap-up and a look at the Weekend Ahead

Posted by Heather Ferguson and Viki Harrison on March 10, 2017


Ethics thumbnail for issue buckets

Late Thursday night, the House debated HJR 8, Independent Ethics Commission, and it was passed by a vote of 66-0, an historic victory!  

Our tremendous thanks to the hard work and tenacious efforts of the original bill sponsors Rep. Jim Dines, Rep. Bill McCamley, Rep. Nathan Small and Sen. Jeff Steinborn, along with new co-sponsor Rep. Daymon Ely this session. The floor debate showed what a truly bipartisan effort this has been, including incorporating feedback from committees along the way, which truly made this a better bill as it moves to be considered by the Senate.

HJR 8’s next stop will likely be the Senate Rules Committee. With your help, we've been working to establish an independent State Ethics Commission for more than 38 years, and 2017 COULD be the year our efforts finally succeed! Please help make this happen, and call your Senator in the Senate Rules Committee today!

PASSED!

SB 96, Campaign Finance Disclosure, sponsored by Sen. Peter Wirth and Rep. Jim Smith, passes House Judiciary Committee and is on to the House Floor!

Please contact your Representative and ask them to support SB 96 to ensure that everyone spending large amounts of money in our elections discloses where that money comes from and where it is going! 

SB 96 is not only a priority bill for Common Cause New Mexico this year, but it is also one of only five bills that will be scored for our first NM GPA. Check out our new website to see all the bills being scored, our methodology and read about our Four Pillars of Democracy.

This proposed disclosure legislation has passed the Senate FOUR times (the last three unanimously), as well as all House committees in prior years. This bill will overhaul the current law to bring it in line with both recent constitutional rulings and modern campaign practices by:

  • Requiring public disclosure of information about the campaign spending of PACs and other non-candidate campaign participants without crossing constitutional boundaries established by the courts
  • Requiring independent groups to disclose contributions and expenditures

Saturday, March 11

Senate Rules Committee calendar – committee starts at 9:00 a.m. in Room 321

HB 73, Public Officials as Lobbyists sponsored by Rep. Jim Dines, Rep. Joanne Ferrary and Rep. Nathan Small.

This bill was amended with changes recommended by the committee on Friday morning and will be presented as a committee substitute for HB 73. This bill will be amended to require legislators to wait one year before registering to lobby at our state legislature in New Mexico, as well as technical changes to the bill. Common Cause New Mexico testified that, “Revolving Door” legislation is important so that average citizens’ access to their legislators isn't perceived as impeded by the relationships and influence of recently retired legislators, who are free to immediately return to the legislature to lobby their former colleagues.

House Judiciary Committee calendar – committee begins at 9:00 a.m. in room 309.

SB 97, Public Financing of Campaign Fixes, sponsored by Sen. Peter Wirth.

New Mexico currently has three systems for public financing of campaigns: the Public Regulation Commission, Court of Appeals and the NM Supreme Court. This bill fixes current statutory language that is unconstitutional following recent case rulings. Also, it prohibits candidates who run unopposed from receiving more than 10% of the public funding available to them, and prohibits the use of campaign funds for living expenses or compensation to the candidate or candidate’s family.

Please check in for an update from the Common Cause New Mexico team tomorrow so see what other bills may be added to committee calendars on the Democracy Wire page of our website!

Follow us on Twitter @commoncausenm & like us on Facebook for mid-day updates and remember to CALL YOUR LEGISLATORS!

Office: Common Cause National, Common Cause New Mexico

Issues: Ethics, Ethics, Money in Politics, Money in Politics, More Democracy Reforms

Tags: Creating an Ethics Commission , State Ethics, Disclosure Laws, Disclosure, Limit On Campaign Contributions, The Revolving Door , Fixing Public Campaign Finance, Empowering Small Donors

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