Governor vetoes capital outlay

SANTA FE (AP) — Gov. Bill Richardson vetoed a $348 million capital outlay package on Wednesday and used his line-item veto powers to reject some legislator-backed projects in a $21 million budget measure. The governor took his action before a deadline in a dispute with the Legislature over the deadline for signing or vetoing the […]

Legislature salutes pledge writers

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By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor Nearly a half century after a Portales organization recognized the need for New Mexico to have a salute to the state flag, the 2008 New Mexico Legislature will recognize members of the organization from that era this week. Members of the Ellen W. Jones chapter of the United Daughters […]

Water board short of funding goal

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor SANTA FE — Even with $2.271 million in state money the Eastern New Mexico Rural Water Authority board picked up Wednesday, the group remained short of its two-year goal for funding a portion of the design work on the Ute Water Project. “I think it was a good news-bad […]

Legislature had some problems, many gestures

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor Sixty days is a long time to let a governmental body off its leash. Thank goodness the state Legislature has come to a close. On Saturday, as the session drew to a close, the headlines proclaimed that New Mexico lawmakers had restored Pluto to planet status, whenever it passes […]

Voter registration bills meet resistance

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor A pair of House bills alllowing voters to register at the polls may be in for tough debate in the 2007 New Mexico Legislature. One of the bills is sponsored by Mary Helen Garcia, D-Las Cruces, the state representative who carried legislation that switched the state to paper ballots […]

Senator Kernan discusses state legislature

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Editor’s note: As a check on the mood and focus of the 2007 New Mexico State Legislature after its first week, Freedom Newspapers conducted an interview with District 42 Sen. Gay Kernan, R-Hobbs. Kernan represents Roosevelt and Curry counties. Q. What has the overall mood of this Legislature been so far? A. Everyone is getting […]

Richardson threatens to veto more than $200 million in spending

By Barry Massey The Associated Press SANTA FE — Gov. Bill Richardson said Tuesday he’s likely to veto more than $200 million from spending bills to balance the main budget account this year and replenish the state’s financial reserves. Richardson delivered the veto warning in a speech in Albuquerque to a statewide business group, and […]

Legislature learning how to say ‘no’ to Richardson

By Barry Massey The Associated Press SANTA FE — Leading up to this year’s legislative session, Gov. Bill Richardson proclaimed 2006 the “year of the child” for his policy proposals. The “year of the Legislature” might be a better description of the just-ended session, however. More than any time during Richardson’s administration, lawmakers — particularly […]

Budget wins final legislative approval, heads to governor

By Barry Massey SANTA FE — Gov. Bill Richardson is withholding judgment on a nearly $5.1 billion budget measure that won final approval in the Legislature. Richardson, who had sharply criticized earlier budget proposals by lawmakers, declined to say whether he will accept or reject the spending measure that was approved Tuesday. The Legislature is […]

Lawmakers rush to complete work by noon

By Deborah Baker and Barry Massey SANTA FE — Lawmakers neared the finishing line of their 30-day session with many of Gov. Bill Richardson’s legislative proposals unresolved. The Legislature adjourns at noon on Thursday and the closing hours of the session resembled a high-wire act as the House and Senate rushed to complete work on […]

Richardson: Wait a year on lobbying reform

By Barry Massey SANTA FE — New Mexico’s laws regulating lobbying of legislators and state officials need tightening, Gov. Bill Richardson said Wednesday. However, Richardson doesn’t want the issue considered during the current 30-day session of the Legislature. The governor, in comments at a legislative breakfast reception sponsored by the New Mexico Press Association, said […]

Grading the governor

Legislators from Curry and Roosevelt Counties graded the performance of Gov. Bill Richardson — some with ambivalence, because Richardson’s term is not yet over. Richardson is a Democrat. The next general election is Nov. 7. Sen. Clinton D. Harden, R-Clovis: “I give him a C+ for providing better services. There is growth in state government, […]

Republicans propose saving $200 million surplus

The Associated Press SANTA FE — The Legislature should save $200 million of the state’s revenue windfall by depositing it in a permanent fund that will generate money to pay for future needs, House Republicans said Thursday. The Legislative Finance Committee is advocating a similar move but is recommending the transfer of $125 million into […]

Legislators grade the governor

Freedom Newspapers Legislators from Curry and Roosevelt Counties graded the performance of Gov. Bill Richardson — some with ambivalence, because Richardson’s term is not yet over. Richardson is a Democrat. The next general election is Nov. 7. Sen. Clinton D. Harden, R-Clovis: “I give him a C+ for providing better services. There is growth in […]

Legislature vicious in final few hours

By David Irvin: Freedom Newspapers The battleground was the floor of the New Mexico Legislature, and according to one area representative, the battle was viscous. Lawmakers thrashed through hundreds of bills over the last 60 days, but some of the most recognizable issues —including a bed tax credit and capital outlay requests — weren’t resolved […]

City officials lobby for funds to legislature

Tony Parra Roosevelt County and the Portales City Council may have two different ways of lobbying to the state legislature but one aspect remains the same: representation at the New Mexico state legislature. The city is represented by its city councilors and Mayor Orlando Ortega in the lobbying process. They are vital in bringing in […]

School Board discusses budget

PNT Staff The Portales School Board met Tuesday night and discussed a tentative budget for the 2003/2004 school year that has been dwindled thanks to unfunded federal mandates set forth by the Legislature. Murphy Quick, principal at Portales High School, said that even after scraping for funds Portales Municipal Schools could be in the hole […]

Lawmakers face new governor, packed agenda

Deborah Baker Santa Fe – The winds of change blowing through the state Capitol amount to welcome fresh air for some – but may give others the chills – as the annual meeting of the Legislature gets under way. Lawmakers return to Santa Fe on Jan. 21 for what promises to be a jam-packed 60-day […]