KUNM

2018 Legislature

ANNAfoxlover via Wikimedia Commons / public domain

State legislators passed a $6.3 billion budget on Wednesday night. A surplus in state revenue made things easier this year, but it also brought new challenges, said Senate Majority Leader Peter Wirth.

Night Owl City via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Supporters of early childhood education didn’t get the funding they were hoping for this legislative session.

Some House lawmakers wanted to use more money from the State’s Land Grant Permanent Fund for things like pre-K, childcare cssistance and other programs. But Democratic State Senator John Arthur Smith said that’s a bad idea.

nmindepth.com

 


Lawmakers passed a $6.3 billion budget Wednesday night. One billion of that will go to behavioral health care and the Department of Health.

 

Health workers would get a raise, and anti-smoking programs would see a multimillion-dollar boost.

Chris Jones / Flickr via Creative Commons

The New Mexico state legislature is running out of time to pass a lottery scholarship bill that could benefit thousands of college students. 

Arianna Sena/KUNM

New Mexico lawmakers unanimously passed a bill Tuesday that would help stop a sinkhole from forming in Carlsbad. The Motor Vehicle Tax to Road Fund measure would take a little over 4 percent of state vehicle tax money and put it toward filling Carlsbad’s brine well.

Highways England via CC

New Mexico’s criminal justice system gets clogged. The courts, the public prosecutors and defenders, they’ve all said they don’t have enough money or staff to process cases fast enough. Growing backlogs, people and details falling through the cracks—those complaints are common. Lawmakers are weighing a bill that would pull minor offenses out of the court system.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

New Mexico has some of the most relaxed gun laws in the U.S. There’s no waiting period to buy a firearm, and there aren’t any state laws restricting what kinds of guns people can own. It is llegal for someone convicted of a felony to have one here, and legislators are working to increase the penalty. But that may not be the kind of law gun-control advocates are looking for. 

insunlight via Flickr / Creative Commons License

 

New Mexico has the second-highest recidivism rate in the country, with half of its former inmates landing back behind prison bars within three years. To shrink those numbers, the state House passed a measure that would require jails and prisons to make sure inmates have access to behavioral health services.

smoker's high life via Flickr / Creative Commons License

On Friday, Feb. 2, lawmakers in Santa Fe got closer to putting legalizing recreational cannabis on the ballot. Advocates say that could help with the state’s opioid overdose rate.

Arianna Sena / Creative Commons


Human trafficking has increased in New Mexico over the last 5 years, with at least 144 reported cases, according to the National Human Trafficking Hotline.

 

Las Cruces Democratic Representative Angelica Rubio introduced a bill that would fund research on human trafficking.

Richie Diesterheft via Flickr / CREATIVE COMMONS

A three strikes enhancement bill stalled in a committee hearing at the Roundhouse in Santa Fe Thursday.

Arianna Sena/KUNM

Senator Howie Morales (D-Silver City) gave the Democratic response to Governor Susana Martinez's 2018 State of the State address. 

We collaborated with New Mexico PBS, NMPolitics.net and NMPoliticalReport on the annotations below. 

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Gov. Susana Martinez delivered the State of the State address Tuesday, January 16, at the start of this year’s 30-day legislative session. The session is primarily focused on the budget, but it also marks the governor’s last year in office. She focused on six ways to grow the economy, including working in cooperation with Mexico.

Stephanie Fitzgerald / Creative Commons

Governor Susana Martinez continued her push for tough-on-crime laws and support for officers on Tuesday in her last State of the State address at the end of her second term.

Andrew Lyman / NM Political Report

Gov. Susana Martinez will give the final State of the State address of her second term on Tuesday, Jan. 16, at the start of the legislative session. She’ll likely be framing her legacy as someone who’s been tough on crime.

State Of The State 2018: Annotated

Jan 16, 2018
New Mexico PBS

Governor Susana Martinez gave the 2018 State of the State address on Tuesday, January 16, 2018. She begins speaking when there's about 54:05 remaining, you can skip ahead in the video or stream the audio alone.

KUNM partnered this year with New Mexico PBSNMPoliticalReport and NMpolitics.net on this live annotation of the speech. 

Priorities For The 2018 Legislative Session

Jan 10, 2018
New Mexico PBS

Let's Talk New Mexico 1/11 8a: The 2018 legislative session begins January 16. Along with setting state spending priorities, lawmakers are also expected to consider legislation on education and public safety during the 30-day session. 

What questions do you have about the upcoming session? What issues do you hope get the most attention from lawmakers this year? 

Pixabay, Creative Commons

Governor Susana Martinez called this week for lawmakers to repeal a bail bond amendment during next year’s legislative session and bail bondsmen are on board with her effort.