NEW MEXICO We Are Almost Halfway There…Two Bills Now Headed to The Senate Floor!

NEW MEXICO We Are Almost Halfway There…Two Bills Now Headed to The Senate Floor!

Common Cause New Mexico has been working to advance public financing and campaign reporting reforms

Friday’s Big Democracy Wins:

SB 97 Public Financing System “Fix” and SB 96 Campaign Finance Disclosure both passed Senate Judiciary Committee UNANIMOUSLY! 

In tonight’s hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Wirth’s SB 96 was passed unanimously for the fourth time (five times total!), and now its off to the full Senate next week!

All members also voted unanimously to send SB 97 to the Senate Floor for a full vote.  This bill to fix unconstitutional language currently in our public financing statutes passed both chambers back in 2013, and we hope this year will be the year that it is signed into law! 

Get ready for an exciting week ahead!

Monday, February 13

SB 168 Updating the Lobbyist Regulation Act, sponsored by Sen. Jeff Steinborn will likely be heard in the Senate Rules Committee at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, February 13.

After meeting with several Senate Rules Committee Members this week to discuss their reservations about SB 168 when it was tabled on Wednesday morning, we worked on an amendment that will close a loophole in statute that currently only requires expenditures over $100 to be reported. Though we ended up taking out much of the other language included in the bill this year, it gives us an opportunity to bring this legislation up in the interim for more fine-tuning next year.

HB 73 Public Officials as Lobbyists sponsored by Rep. Jim Dines, Rep. Joanne Ferrary and Rep. Nathan Small will be heard on Monday, February 13 at 1:30 in the House Judiciary Committee.

This bill requires legislators to wait two years before registering to lobby at our state legislature in New Mexico.  HB73 has already passed its first committee unanimously in the second week of the session. Common Cause New Mexico testified that, “Revolving Door” legislation is important for our legislature to support so that average citizens’ access to their legislators doesn’t feel negated by their relationships and influence of recently retired legislators, many of whom immediately return to the legislature the following year to lobby their former colleagues

Thursday, February 16

HJR 8, Independent Ethics Commission, sponsored by Rep. Jim Dines, Rep. Nathan Small, Rep. Bill McCamley and Sen. Jeff Steinborn will be heard in the House Local Government, Elections, Land Grants & Cultural Affairs Committee on Thursday, February  16 at 1:30 p.m. in Room 315.

HJR 8 is one of only five bills Common Cause is scoring for our new NMGPA Scorecard this year.  Polling and research shows that states are best served with an Ethics Commission that is grounded and protected in a state’s constitution.  

Common Cause has been working on the creation of an ethics committee in various forms for almost 40 years, please help us make 2017 the year that we pass meaningful ethics reform in New Mexico and contact your representative today to ask for their support! 

Please check in for an update from the Common Cause New Mexico team next week so see what bills may be added to the list over the weekend for early next week 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!