PDA DIGEST JAN 18, 2016- NEW MEXICO IN CRISIS: LEGISLATIVE ISSUE #3

PDA Meeting Jan 2016

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PDACNM Newsletter January 18, 2016

REPORT OF OUR JANUARY MEETING

A full house attended our meeting to hear Viki Harrison (Common Cause), Senator Bill O’Neill (State Senator), and Peter Simonson (ACLU) discuss many of the important issues that may show up as bills this year.

Ethics reform, including creation of an ethics commission and ethics training for legislators may get to the floor in a Brian Egoff sponsored bill. With 2 state treasurers and a Secretary of State in prison/jail, it seems we need help in NM.

Senator O’Neill was passionate about the apathy he sees in low voter turnout, 40% of young voters registered as DTS, and the fact that non-competitive districts, with one party having no opposition in the elections, enhances the low turnout. His bill to create an independent, non-partisan Redistricting Committee will be introduced again, for the 4th year. It needs support to get out of committee.

Peter Simonson spoke about Real ID, giving some history about its quiet national introduction in a 2005 military bill. There are a number of options for a Real ID card, but probably the can will be kicked down the road another year or two, as the Federal Government has given the states another 2 year extension. The Garcia-Richards bill this session will propose an independent Real ID bill, which will leave the drivers’ license system as is.

A Q and A, announcements, visiting, and a moment of silence for our founder, Dr. Bob Greenberg, were also part of the evening.

PDACNM thanks our speakers, who were so informative.

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