Legislative Update: $7.4B budget passes Senate, anti-police bill heads to Governor’s desk

Wednesday was busy at the Legislature, with many bills being rushed through the Senate and the House, with many extreme bills moving forward. Here are just some bills that were advanced:

ANTI-POLICE BILL

H.B. 4, sponsored by Speaker of the House Brian Egolf, is a radical bill that would directly line Egolf’s pockets. The civil litigation brought forth from the bill against law enforcers will send lucrative business to civil rights lawyers like Egolf. 

In doing so, the bill would bankrupt local communities and create a hostile environment for police officers. During testimony on the bill during the committee process, many law enforcers spoke up to talk about how the bill would put targets on their backs and force many peace officers to flee the state for less hostile areas of the country. 

On Wednesday afternoon, the House of Representatives voted 43-26 on a mostly party-line vote. It now goes to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s desk, where she is expected to sign it.

Read more about the bill here. 

HUGE $7.4 BILLION BUDGET PASSES SENATE

H.B. 2, the “General Appropriations Act,” passed the New Mexico Senate after a lengthy debate between Republicans and Democrats, with Democrats looking to fill more pork and radical funding mechanisms into the bill, while Republicans sought to amend the bill to cut off funding for abortions while also lowering Gov. Lujan Grisham’s contingency fund. 

Sen. Bill Sharer (R-San Juan) called the $7.4 billion pork-filled budget “bloated”

“I’ll remind this body that just a year or so ago, we built a budget about the same amount, and then we had to have a special session … to shore up the budget,” said Sen. Bill Burt (R-Chaves, Lincoln, and Otero) “I think we spent about half the reserves, about $800 million, and y’all correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s a lot of money. Currently, our reserves at this level are $1.76 billion. If we have another downturn like that, that’s going to be a little tough.”

Radical Democrat Sen. Antoinette Sedillo-Lopez sponsored amendments to double the cost-of-living adjustment for state workers to 3 percent and another to raise the wages of any state government employee who makes less than $15 an hour to at least $15.

The spending plan passed on a 29-13 vote. Two Republicans, Sen. Steve Neville (R-San Juan) and Sen. Pat Woods (R-Curry, Quay, and Union) voted with Democrats voted to support the budget. 

RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA BILL HEADS TO SENATE FLOOR

On early Thursday morning, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance House Bill 12 sponsored by Reps. Javier Martinez (D-Bernalillo) and Andrea Romero (D-Santa Fe), an extreme recreational pot legalization bill, on a 5-4 vote. The bill was amended to include “new provisions allowing for a three-year cap on plant production and requiring an independent testing organization to regularly test the product for safety purposes,” according to a report

“I don’t believe your bill has been very carefully read,” said Sen. Joseph Cervantes to the bill sponsors during the committee meeting. He voted with Republicans against the bill.

If the bill passes the New Mexico Senate and then gets signed into law, the State of New Mexico would begin issuing licenses on March 1, 2022.

Find out out what representatives and senators are bankrolled by the marijuana lobby.

ACTION ALERT:

In these final hours of the New Mexico Legislature, extreme proposals are still making their way through. Please contact your legislators today and ask them to oppose these measures that are on the calendar:

S.B. 11 — the “Clean Fuel Standards Act,” also known as the gas tax on the poor sponsored by Sen. Mimi Stewart (D-Bernalillo) would result in a gas price increase of 20+ cents per gallon on New Mexicans. Contact your NM House Representative to oppose this bill. 

S.B. 230 —  the “Institutional Racism In State Agencies” bill sponsored by Sen. Linda Lopez (D-Bernalillo) “SB230 directs each state agency or entity that receives state funding to annually develop and submit a plan to address institutional racism as part of its annual final budget submission. SB230 would require copies of the annual plans to be provided to the Legislature, the Legislative Finance Committee, and the Courts, Corrections, & Justice Committee,” according to the Fiscal Impact Report. 

This bill would foster racism within state agencies based upon arbitrary attributes that employees cannot control. This would further bureaucratize New Mexico state agencies and waste hard-earned taxpayer money on programs that do not directly benefit the state in any way, shape, or form. Contact your NM House Representative to oppose this bill. 

S.B. 316 — “Gender and Orientation Data Collection” by Sen. Carrie Hamblen (D-Doña Ana) harvests “gender identity” and “sexual identity” information from New Mexicans through every state agency, which would put this private information in the hands of government bad actors who could weaponize this data against New Mexicans. Contact your NM House Representative to oppose this bill. 

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