NEW MEXICO – What’s Happening on the Last Day of January?

Posted by Viki Harrison on January 31, 2017


A photo of the New Mexico Roundhouse floor

Hurry up and wait – that is what it’s like in this third week of the session… We know we have lots of hearings coming up, but they aren’t scheduled yet. So we are having conversations with Legislators and other advocates, preparing talking points and research and continuing to let folks know about our upcoming scorecard, the NM GPA.

Wednesday has a little something for good government.

Tomorrow morning, Wednesday, February 1, in the Senate Rules committee we have one of our priority bills, SB 97 Public Campaign Financing, on the agenda!

This bill will improve New Mexico’s existing system of public campaign financing. New Mexico currently has three systems for public financing of campaigns: the Public Regulation Commission, Court of Appeals and the NM Supreme Court. On June 27, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court reaffirmed the constitutionality of public campaign financing in the Arizona Free Enterprise v. Bennett decision.

The ruling, however, struck down one mechanism used in some public financing programs, including New Mexico's Voter Action Act. While the current bill does not address what was struck down as far as matching funds, it does prohibit candidates who run unopposed from receiving more than 10% of the public funding available to them, and also prohibits the use of campaign funds for living expenses or compensation to the candidate or candidate’s family.

The bill should be heard in the Senate Rules committee at 8:30 AM. Let your legislators know to support Senator Peter Wirth’s SB 97!

Other good governance bills that are coming up this week:

Click on the link for the committee and you will find the agenda, committee members, links for bills, analysis of bills and what committees they have been assigned to – as well as sponsors and co-sponsors.

Thursday in House Local Government, Elections, Land Grants and Cultural Affairs

  • HB 120 Disqualification of Presidential Electors
  • HB 119 Prohibition Period for Candidate Contributions

And there will be lots more coming up soon – was hoping for today but now looking to tomorrow.

Check in then for the next Democracy Wire update from the Common Cause New Mexico team!

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

Tags: Fixing Public Campaign Finance, Disclosure Laws, Disclosure, Empowering Small Donors

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