3-31-21 Alert: Special Session Update; Bills in Danger of Governor’s Pocket Veto: Updated April 5

Good Morning New Mexico Activists:

There are troubling indications that the Governor may not sign some important bills. And there are signals from the Senate about concerns with HB 2, the special session version of HB 12 to legalize recreational marijuana. In this Alert we identify bills where your voice is needed to encourage the Governor to sign them into law. We also outline how the recreational cannabis bill has been amended to garner the votes needed to pass and what you can do to ensure it does. And we provide a link to a page that lists all the bills signed into law by the Governor thus far.

Before we get started on how and why to contact your Senator and the Governor, a couple of announcements.

Can You Help Sustain Retake?

We need your help to form a 501c3, to create a sustainable organization with staff and expand our scope of work. If you like what we do, please help us do more and do better into the future. An all-volunteer effort is not sustainable. Here’s the link to donate to Retake. To learn more about our new, expanded direction and why we’re asking you to donate, here’s the link to Saturday’s post. Thank you!

Retake Zoominar With Joe Monahan

Wednesday, April 7, 6 pmWhat Really Just Happened in the Roundhouse, a Conversation with Joe Monahan and Paul Gibson, moderated by Roxanne Barber. Throughout the legislative session, Joe Monahan has been an important source of insights that dig beneath the votes. He wrote several times about bills Retake supported and we thought a conversation with him now, while the session is still fresh in our minds, is a good way to achieve a better understanding of the forces that are in play at the Roundhouse.

Click here to register for this important discussion.

Cannabis Legalization (now HB 2) May Need a Push in the Senate

We are hearing that getting this bill through the House should not be difficult and could occur this morning. To secure the votes needed to pass, the bill has been amended to include a plant count limit (a good thing that would deter the larger cannabis producers from dominating the recreational cannabis market) and to remove the expungement provisions that would have expunged records of many who had been arrested for cannabis related offenses (a bad thing, and something we will seek to restore in separate legislation going forward).

What remains is still a bill worth supporting. Please contact your Senator and ask her/him to support HB 2. Go to this link to read more about the changes to the bill and its status. Go here to get contact information for your Senator.

Bills the Governor Needs to Sign

Thus far, the Governor has signed the following bills supported by Retake–only one: SB 10 Abortion Ban Repeal. You can track the bills that have been signed by the Governor here. She hasn’t signed any legislation in over a week, but must sign off on bills by April 9.

Call the Governor at (505) 476-2200. Or comment online at: https://www.governor.state.nm.us/contact-the-governor/

While there is a daunting list of bills remaining to be signed, with the special session under way the Governor may be withholding her signature as leverage on the two bills she has put on the call for the special session. Message: She’ll sign the other bills if she gets what she wants in the special session. With only four days remaining to sign bills in addition to the 12 bills we support (below), there are scores of other bills unsigned. We need to begin to put pressure on the Governor!

Please contact the Governor and ask her to sign the bills below into law.  If you can, send a separate request for each bill. And continue to contact the Governor daily. In a few instances we are reasonably confident bills will be signed (HJR 1, HB 47 and perhaps HB  51a and SB 112), however, there are concerns about whether she will sign the others. (Contact info is below the list.)

  • SB 8 Local Government Air Quality Control Act. This is a critical piece of legislation that provides local jurisdictions tools to limit emissions and protect our air quality.
  • SB 15 Voting District Geographic Boundaries
  • SB 32 Roxy’s Law
  • SB 75, State Agency Disclosure of Sensitive Info Act, prohibits (with some exceptions) the release of personal information – such as sexual orientation and immigration status – by a state employee.
  • SB 84 Community Solar Act. We’ve heard the Governor may pocket veto this bill. It was compromised with amendments to placate the utility industry, but is very worthy of being implemented and once implemented, improved.
  • SB 112 Sustainable Economy Task Force. Is the Governor is influenced by NM Oil & Gas Association on this one?
  • HJR-1 Permanent Fund for Early Childhood Amendment
  • HB 4 NM Civil Rights Act
  • HB 15 Sustainable Building Tax Credit
  • HB 20 Healthy Workplace Act, AKA Paid Sick Leave
  • HB 47 Elizabeth Whitefield End-of-Life Options
  • HB 51a Environmental Data Base.

Please call the Governor at (505) 476-2200. Or comment online at: https://www.governor.state.nm.us/contact-the-governor/

In Solidarity and Gratitude,

Roxanne and Paul