March 13, 2009 legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 8 The living daylights: The Senate Public Affairs Committee voted 7-1 on Thursday in favor of a bill to abolish daylight saving time in New Mexico. In a news release, bill sponsor Sen. Mary Jane Garcia, D-Dona Ana, said “There are so many reasons for New Mexico to exempt itself from […]

Senator seeks end to Daylight Savings Time

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican Have you been a little sleepy or slightly disoriented since the change to Daylight Savings Time this week? If so, a state Senate leader wants to help. Senate Majority Whip Mary Jane Garcia, D-Dona Ana, on Tuesday introduced a bill to get rid of Daylight Savings Time altogether. “Daylight […]

Bill seeks transparency on state spending

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican State expenditures would be displayed online and searchable under a measure the Senate approved Tuesday, one of a few moves that would increase transparency in the Roundhouse this year. Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, who is carrying the measure (SB159), said it would make it easy for people to follow […]

Death penalty nears end

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican The bill that would abolish the death penalty moved closer to becoming law Monday when the Senate Judiciary voted 6-5 to pass the bill to the Senate floor. Supporters of House Bill 285, sponsored by Rep. Gail Chasey, D-Albuquerque, considered the committee vote an important victory because in recent […]

Legislation proposes changes to train security, warning bells and fines

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican The New Mexico Rail Runner Express could have its own police patrol, would ring its bell for a shorter amount of time in Santa Fe and could tap into more funding under measures moving in the House and Senate this session. Another measure would increase by $90 the fine […]

March 5, 2009 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 16 Webcasting progress: The Senate Rules Committee on Wednesday approved SR3, which would allow webcasting from the Senate floor. The measure now goes to the Senate floor for debate. Meanwhile, another lawmaker is webcasting from House committee meetings. Rep. Dennis Kintigh, R-Roswell, is sending out video of meetings at www.nmgov.tv Fresh […]

Death penalty repeal heads to Judiciary panel

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican The bill that would abolish capital punishment in New Mexico cleared another hurdle Tuesday when it got a do-pass recommendation on a 5-2 party-line vote in the Senate Public Affairs Committee. Senate Bill 285, sponsored by Rep. Gail Chasey, D-Albquerque, now goes to Senate Judiciary, which is considered the […]

Medical e-records bill clears Senate

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican After trying for three legislative sessions, Sen. Peter Wirth was able Tuesday to get a majority of state senators to agree to a measure allowing patients and doctors to use electronic medical records. Under the proposal, patients could opt to have their records made available electronically to doctors they […]

Bill protects ‘controversial science’ teaching

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican A measure pending in the Senate Education Committee would

March 3, 2009 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 18 Golden parachutes: The House Judiciary Committee will consider a measure (HB538) sponsored by Rep. Bill Rehm, R-Albuquerque, that would prohibit state agencies from giving extra money to employees who are terminated for cause or who resign. Under the bill, the state still could buy out an employment contract. During debate […]

Proposed algae plant to create 100 jobs

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Portales will become home to an algae farm that produces biofuel and an estimated 100 new jobs for the region if the U.S. Senate passes a proposed budget bill. Nearly $1 million in funding for the project is included in the Fiscal Year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Bill expected to […]

Proposed bill exempts seniors from jury duty

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer The saying age has its privileges may find new meaning in New Mexico law. A bill passed by the state Senate Tuesday gives senior citizens 70 and older an automatic pass on jury duty. Introduced by Sen. Stuart Ingle, SB 112 gives citizens 70 and older a choice to […]

Anti-cancer bills get new focus

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican Activists are renewing their push for bills that target cancer screening and treatment in the wake of the death of Patty Jennings, the director of the New Mexico Medical Insurance Pool. Jennings, wife of Senate President Pro Tem Tim Jennings, died this weekend after battling breast cancer. She was […]

Domestic partners bill revived

By Steve Terrell: The New Mexican A stalled bill that would establish domestic partnerships for unmarried couples in New Mexico got new life Monday when a senator who had opposed the idea decided to let the entire Senate consider it. The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 6-5 Monday to pass Senate Bill 12, without recommendation, to […]

Senate panel approves domestic partnerships

By Barry Massey: The Associated Press SANTA FE, N.M. — A proposal allowing domestic partnerships cleared its first hurdle in the Legislature on Wednesday when it narrowly won approval in a Senate committee. The Public Affairs Committee endorsed the measure on a 5-to-4 vote and sent the proposal to another panel for consideration. The bill […]

Feb. 13, 2009 Legislative tidbits

Days remaining in session: 36 Measuring state workers: A measure by freshman Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, would measure the productivity of state government employees. An analysis of Senate Bill 158 says labor productivity is defined as “the output per worker-hour of labor.” Further, the bill says “labor productivity would be calculated using Bureau of Labor […]

Senate to vote on stimulus package

By Gabriel Monte: Freedom New Mexico As Congress debates the size of an economic stimulus package aimed at creating jobs by funding “shovel-ready” infrastructure projects, Clovis is working to get two projects ready for the bill, according to city officials. City Manager Joe Thomas said replacing the Hull Street overpass and improving the city’s wastewater […]

Feb. 10, 2009 Legislative Tidbits

Days remaining in session: 39 Autism bill passes Senate A measure requiring private health insurance companies to cover autism treatment passed the Senate Monday. If the House and Gov. Bill Richardson sign on, autism coverage would include screening and treatment through speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy and applied behavioral analysis, according to the Senate […]

More ethics bills placed in hopper

By Steve Terrell: The Santa Fe New Mexican Lt. Gov. Diane Denish, with the help of some House Democrats, is pushing a package of bills that she said Tuesday will bring more transparency to state government. Denish told reporters at a news conference that her package is separate from the ethics legislation package being pushed […]

Unmarried couples bill stalls again

By Steve Terrell A domestic partnership bill on Monday fell short of the votes it needed to clear a state Senate committee. The tie vote meant the Senate Judiciary Committee remains a roadblock for backers of legislation allowing unmarried partners in New Mexico — same-sex and otherwise — many of the same rights and privileges […]