- The Legislative Finance Council released its $6.15 billion budget proposal.
- Gov. Susana Martinez doesn't like some portions of the budget very much.
Enrique Knell, a spokesman for the governor, said Martinez is willing to work with legislators in a bipartisan manner, but the committee's proposed budget "doles out millions of dollars worth of untargeted, across-the-board government employee pay raises, while dramatically underfunding economic development efforts."
- State Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, R-Sandia Park, is on the LFC and praised the proposed budget in a Youtube video.
- Martinez unveiled proposals to help startup investment in the state on Friday.
- Santa Fe mayor David Coss endorsed Javier Gonzales for mayor this weekend.
- A late letter from the Secretary of State sent to Green Party members just ahead of the controversial Albuquerque abortion ban vote confused some voters.
- New Mexico's Severance Tax Permanent Fund got an $85 investment from the state last year. That's not $85 million for the multi-billion dollar fund it's $85.
State Sen. John Arthur Smith, D-Deming, said the diversion of money from the fund has prevented it from growing.
“We are diverting money that goes into it and it has been at the $4 billion level for five or six years,” Smith said. “We’re distributing less money [from the fund] because it hasn’t been keeping up with inflation.”
- Surprise! Gov. Susana Martinez doesn't like a proposal to have voters vote on legalizing marijuana. Of course, the proposed constitutional amendment wouldn't go through her office so she would have little say. The proposal is very unlikely to go anywhere this year.
- The Portales News-Tribune looks at the legislative priorities of area legislators including Senate minority leader Stuart Ingle, R-Portales.
- Las Cruces will likely join the ranks of those who oppose a legislative change to a tax that helps fund the Spaceport. At issue is that part of the tax goes towards funding education -- which legislators say skews the school funding formula.
- Those who were supposed to get Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act's expanded Medicaid may have had their applications lost.
- Food pantries are seeing more people looking for food following cuts to federal SNAP benefits.
From the Las Cruces Sun-News:
At Casa de Peregrinos, between 950 to 1,100 families stop by for food every month on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The rural program sees 1,200 to 1,500 people living in surrounding communities and colonias. Most families are on SNAP, Alba said.
"One of the things the families are saying now is that Casa de Peregrinos used to be an emergency food program, and now it's more of a necessity. They actually budget around what we give them," Alba said. "A lot of the families just don't have a choice there, that's just what they have to do."
- The Albuquerque Journal covers the court case looking at extending end-of-life choices in New Mexico.
If 2nd District Judge Nan Nash decides this month in favor of the two oncologists and one terminally ill cancer patient who brought the suit, prescribing fatal drugs to terminally ill patients will no longer be a fourth-degree felony.
Doctors in four other states can legally do it: Vermont, Montana, Oregon and Washington.
- Santa Fe mayoral candidate Bill Dimas won't attend any mayoral forums because he says they are hosted by "special interest" groups.
- Will a ban on texting while driving finally pass the state legislature? Sen. Peter Wirth, D-Santa Fe, is hoping that the fifth time is the charm.
- The Albuquerque Journal covers the ban on same-sex marriage on the Navajo Nation. The ban is in the headlines because of the New Mexico Supreme Court ruling that same-sex marriage is legal in New Mexico. The Navajo Nation is a sovereign nation and has its own laws.
- The revenues from the 2013 State Fair are still unknown.
- A judge dismissed a redistricting lawsuit against Albuquerque mayor Richard Berry.
- The city of Albuquerque is ready to ban sales of e-cigarettes to minors.
- New Mexico was mentioned in the latest of many stories about film incentives around the country.
“When this governor took over we had a huge deficit, like many states did back then,” Nick Maniatis, director of the New Mexico Film Office, said of Gov. Susana Martinez, who came in three years ago. “They were looking for ways to cut, and one thing they looked at was the unlimited cap we had for film. They put on a $50 million rolling cap, meaning that we can go over that cap in a given year but the people that are over it will get paid in the following fiscal year.”
- Tuesday is the filing deadline for those who want to run for municipal office in Rio Rancho.
- Same thing for potential Clovis candidates.
- The Farmington city council will talk about legislative priorities at the council's meeting tomorrow.
- The Cibola Beacon looks ahead to what Cibola County can expect in 2014 including municipal elections in Milan and Grants and county elections.
- Being and adjunct professor isn't all that great, the Albuquerque Journal finds. The story quotes Robert Anderson -- a professor at Central New Mexico Community College and former candidate for Congress as a member of the Green Party. I took a political science course of his at CNM years ago.
- Carlsbad's police chief suddenly retired and a former Eddy County sheriff may be his replacement.
- Nearly half of the traffic fatalities in San Juan County involved alcohol.
- The Santa Fe New Mexican spoke to a former FBI agent who sued the agency for discrimination back in the late 1980s. Bernardo “Mat” Pérez is now a private investigator in Santa Fe.
- An interesting read on the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southern New Mexico and why it is an ideal place to store nuclear waste.
- Joline Gutierrez-Krueger profiles Geeks Who Drink, the highly popular pub quiz. I remember going just about every Wednesday for about a year, riding our bikes down Washington to O'Niell's. Of all the times we went, we won exactly once. I'd say we finished in the top-five (of anywhere from 20-35+ teams) less than a handful of times.