Legislative roundup, March 5, 2019
Days left in the session: 12
Another state song: “O, Fair New Mexico” has been the state song since 1973. New Mexico also has a Spanish language state song, “Asi Es Nuevo Mejico,” designated that same year.
Now state Sen. Pete Campos, D-Las Vegas, wants the Legislature to designate “a state chile song.”
His choice is “Chile Verde Rock.”
With fewer than two weeks left in the session, the Senate Rules Committee took time Monday to debate Campos’ Senate Bill 469 and move it forward.
￼￼￼￼￼￼￼A staff analysis of Campos’ proposal asks: “What will be the consequences of not enacting this bill?”
It also supplied the answer: “New Mexico would have no state chile song.”
That sums up the bill’s significance.
No names: The Senate on Monday voted 32-2 for a bill to allow the state lottery to conceal the identity of prize winners.
The sponsor, Sen. Pat Woods, R-Broadview, said keeping winners anonymous might help them fend off people trying to get their hands on some of the prize money.
His proposal, Senate Bill 397, next goes to the House of Representatives. It is one of several bills this session that would weaken the public records law by creating exceptions to it.
Lottery scholarships: Another attempt to shore up the Legislative Lottery Scholarship Fund sailed through the House of Representatives on a vote of 64-0 after minimal debate Monday.
Among other provisions, House Bill 441, sponsored by Republican Rep. Jason Harper of Rio Rancho, would funnel all unclaimed lottery prize money to the scholarship fund.
For years the fund provided 100 percent of tuition to eligible New Mexico college students. But with rising tuition rates, the fund now provides just 60 percent.
Quote of the day: “That’s the bestest kind of endorsement you can have.” — Sen. Linda Lopez, D-Albuquerque, after Bernadette Apodaca, mother of new Public Education Secretary Karen Trujillo, spoke in favor of her daughter’s confirmation.