Analysis: Budget takes backseat to memorials, whistleblower bill

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican So what did taxpayers get for the $4.87 million 30-day budget session of the state Legislature? Well, one thing we didn’t get was a budget for state government. Because the state Senate and House couldn’t agree on a budget plan, Gov. Bill Richardson said he’ll call a special session [...]

Special session in store

The Associated Press SANTA FE — The New Mexico Legislature adjourned Thursday without a plan on how to finance public schools and state government in the coming year, marking the first time in 26 years that lawmakers finished a regular session without reaching a budget deal. Shortly after lawmakers wrapped up their 30-day session, Gov. [...]

Education cuts have dire consequences

By Dennis Roch: Guest columnist As the state Legislature deliberates over New Mexico’s budget shortfall, I have frequently heard the statement, “Every program must take its share of cuts.” This statement assumes every program is of equal value, and has an equal return for our future benefit, an idea which is far from the truth. [...]

No action yet on campaign ethics proposals

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican With the ticking of the clock on the New Mexico Legislature’s 30-day session growing louder every day, no legislative committee so far has acted on an ethics bill designed to prohibit political campaign contributions by lobbyists and contractors. The House Voters and Elections Committee on Tuesday discussed House Bill [...]

Legislature at halfway mark

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican With the halfway point of the legislative session coming Wednesday — and with nearly 500 bills in the hopper — lawmakers have passed only one bill. But a couple of tax increase bills that would raise sales tax for everyone and impose a surtax on upper income New Mexicans [...]

Governor to deliver State of the State address

By Steve Terrell and Kate Nash: The Santa Fe New Mexican Gov. Bill Richardson delivers his eighth and final State of the State address today, shortly after the second regular session of the 49th Legislature convenes in Santa Fe. Richardson, who by law can’t seek a third consecutive term, promises his speech will be short, [...]

Balancing budget tops legislative session

By Kevin Wilson: Freedom New Mexico With the state expecting a budget shortfall of at least $600 million for 2010, the priority for the New Mexico Legislature is to fund what’s essential and cut what’s not essential. The 2010 regular session starts Tuesday in Santa Fe and lawmakers have 30 days to agree on what [...]

Attending legislative session presents challenges

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican For years people trying to attend a session of the state Legislature have complained about the parking situation at the Capitol. There’s finally some good news on that front. Last year the state opened a new $13 million parking structure just west of the Roundhouse with 580 spaces. (Entrance [...]

Melrose Bombing Range spared from cuts

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer The $5 million for expansion at the Melrose Bombing Range has escaped cuts in the Legislature. State Sen. Stuart Ingle, R-Portales, said the money is there for now, although he doesn’t know what the governor will propose. Clovis Mayor Gayla Brumfield said the project has been around since the [...]

Offcials: State bombing range money safe for now

By Argen Buncan: PNT senior writer The $5 million for expansion at the Melrose Bombing Range has escaped cuts in the Legislature. State Sen. Stuart Ingle, R-District 27, said the money is there for now, although he doesn’t know what the governor will propose. Clovis Mayor Gayla Brumfield said the project has been around since [...]