ENSURING A FAIR AND FUNCTIONAL GOVERNMENT
While the majority of elected officials in New Mexico are honest, hardworking people, our state suffers because of the few that don’t play by the rules. Whether it be elected officials prioritizing pet projects for big donors over the needs of everyday voters, or misusing taxpayer money for their personal interests, everyone pays the price when our elected representatives do not lead by example.
New Mexico is one of only eight states without an ethics commission, and Common Cause New Mexico has been working toward an ethics commission for more than 40 years! But with the support of our allies, dedicated lawmakers and advocates like YOU, we’re well on our way to fixing that problem and restoring trust in our state government.
In 2017, the New Mexico state legislature passed a joint resolution sending a proposal to create an Independent State Ethics Commission to the voters. Voters will have the opportunity on the November 2018 ballot to approve a constitutional amendment establishing an ethics commission.
The Independent State Ethics Commission would do the following:
- Oversee the conduct of state officers, public employees, contractors and lobbyists
- Serve as a resource for officials to get guidance on issues and provide ethics training
- Investigate complaints alleging violations of standards of conduct, campaign finance reporting requirements or other disclosure requirements
- Adjudicate complaints that are found to have enough evidence to proceed to a hearing
- Have the authority to issue subpoenas and compel witnesses
- Impose fines and sanctions where violations are found
- Forward complaints with potential criminal implications to the appropriate agencies
- Conduct its work in public to the extent permitted by the enabling legislation
While most politicians get involved in public life to try to make a difference for their communities, the need for better oversight and accountability is clear. New Mexicans deserve a fair, transparent process for handling ethics complaints.
Support ethics reforms!
Help us ensure a brighter future for New Mexico by supporting an independent ethics commission.